Oct 24, 2014

Uber delivers flu shots: How on-demand tech can do good

posted by Larra Morris

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Flu is most dangerous to the most vulnerable—small children, the elderly, the immuno-compromised—and every responsible adult should get a flu shot to help keep the germ from spreading. Typically, this involves a trip to the doctor or a local drug store. But on Thursday, in Boston, New York, and Washington, D.C., there was another option that didn’t even involve leaving the house: Uber.

At midday in these cities, Uber added on-demand flu shots to its standard menu of on-demand ride options. With the Uber app, users could call for a registered nurse, who would arrive to administer a flu shot at an indoor location of their choosing. The shots were free, and one request was good for shots for up to 10 people. The company also says it will donate $5 per shot given to Red Cross vaccination efforts for children.
via Wired

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Image: David Cheskin/PA Wire

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Oct 23, 2014

This dress Is made of chocolate

posted by Larra Morris

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For Chocolate Week, Caroline McCall, a wardrobe designer for Downton Abbey, made this Art Deco-inspired dress. It took 3 months and 132 pounds of chocolate, a few of which presumably did not make it into the actual dress but were judiciously expended in the creative process.
via Neatorama

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Oct 23, 2014

New tablet case recognizes sign language and translates it into text

posted by Larra Morris

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But Campbell wants to change this. He’s the co-founder and CEO of MotionSavvy, an Alameda, California-based startup that’s developing a case for tablet computers that can serve as a virtual interpreter for the deaf. Known as UNI, the case uses gesture recognition technology developed by Leap Motion to translate sign language into audible speech. It then merges this with voice recognition technology to convert spoken word to text. Because there are a variety of signs for any given word, users can upload new signs using a feature called Sign Builder. The system learns how individual users sign, while also distributing each new sign to every UNI device.
via Wired

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Image: MotionSavvy

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Oct 22, 2014

Subatomic particles are really small

posted by Laura Domela

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via xkcd

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Oct 22, 2014

TODAY IS INTERNATIONAL CAPSLOCK DAY

posted by Laura Domela

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via Metafilter

 Official Home Page could use a bit of a redesign. Or maybe just design. :)

IMAGE CREDIT:  INTERNATIONAL CAPS LOCK DAY/FACEBOOK
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Oct 22, 2014

Drones used to monitor behaviour of killer whales

posted by Larra Morris

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Researchers from the Vancouver Aquarium and the US-based National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have begun using drones to keep tabs on endangered killer whales off the west coast of the continent. The technology is giving the researchers a fresh perspective on the well-being of the animals, and provides yet another example of how UAVs are giving rise to new means of conservation.

Armed with a custom-built marine hexacopter, the researchers were able to monitor the status of the protected Northern Resident killer whales and the endangered Southern Resident species.
via Gizmag

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Oct 22, 2014

Your new winter hat should express your brain waves like a neon sign

posted by Larra Morris

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The illumino project by [io] however, has a relatively short and affordable list of materials for creating your own EEG sensor. It’s even built into a beanie that maps your mental status to a colorful LED pompom! Now that winter is around the corner, this project is perfect for those of us who want to try on the mad scientist’s hat and look awesome while we’re wearing it.

How does all the neuro-magic happen? At the heart of [io's] EEG project is a retired Thinkgear ASIC PC board by Neurosky. It comes loaded with fancy algorithms which amplify and process the different types of noise coming from the surface of our brain. A few small electrodes made from sheets of copper and placed in contact with the forehead are responsible for picking up this noise. The bridge between the electrodes and the Thinkgear is an arduino running the illumino project code. For [io's] tutorial, a Tinylilly Arduino is used to mesh with the wearable medium, since all of these parts are concealed in the folded brim of the beanie.
via Hack a Day

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