Archive for the ‘Sensors’ Category

RFID Your Life

<via Springwise.com>

The Loc8tor is a combination of radio-frequency emitting tags and a cellphone-sized signal decoder. Both tags and handheld transmit and receive radio signals. Each handheld device can monitor up to 24 tags, which can be attached to keys, kids, pets and anything else of value that has a tendency to get lost. When registering new tags, users can specify what they will be attached to: ‘Wallet’, ‘Favourite child’, ‘Prize-winning Poodle’, etc.

The system has a maximum range of 183 meters/600 feet, and the handheld will guide its holder to within 2.5 cm/1 inch of the lost possession, using fully directional signals: left, right, up and down. (Particularly useful when kitty-cat is hiding in the attic.)

Not just for finding things, Loc8tor’s alert mode also makes it easy to prevent them from becoming lost. Attach a tag to a child, and then set a safety zone. If the child strays beyond a specified distance, the Loc8tor sounds an alarm. The panic tag also acts as an alarm button that a tagged child can press to activate an alert on the Loc8tor. Obviously, as stated by Loc8tor, this isn’t a replacement for parental supervision. 😉

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RunAway = Nike + iPod

For anyone who wants to get running with the Nike+iPod Sport Kit but is disinclined to drop a hundred bucks on a new pair of special Nike+ kicks, comes the RunAway AnyShoe adapter. This $8 weatherproof sensor holder attaches to your running shoe’s laces and has an easy-to-access button to turn the sensor’s wireless signal off for air travel—which is a slight improvement over the Nike+ shoes, which require you to remove an insole to get at the device. The RunAway is available in five colors to match even the orangest of sneakers. Get your training groove on this way for $30. It is an investment that’ll reap rewards in more runs and a new-found appreciation for leggings.

<reblogged from Gizmodo>

It’s Starting to Look Like the Jetsons

Biosensor Illustration

“Soon, mothers will routinely test their children at home for the flu. Doctors will screen patients for cancer and begin discussing treatment based on the immediate results. Farmers will scrutinize the health of animals, and soldiers and environmental inspectors will test the safety of air and water, without time-consuming trips to the lab.

This is the data-rich future that Dow Corning is helping create via an alliance with Genencor International. They have to make a powerful portable biosensor that–unlike today’s unwieldy equipment–will be easy to use and flexible, capable of performing multiple diagnostic tests.

Kevin Ryan, Dow’s biosensor leader, expects the first device, aimed at veterinarians, to be available in a couple of years. Sensors for human use and food inspection need FDA approval, which could take several years. The promise, though, is real: life-saving data without the wait.”

Click here for more on how this will work.

<via FastCompany>

Nana Technology. As in “Technology for Grandma.”

<via Untangled Life>nana technology

Andrew Carle, an assistant professor at George Mason University coined that term for all the technology that’s being developed and aimed at your grandmother or grandfather, Untangled Life reports. Products and services that fall within Nana Technology include Smart Pill Dispensers, Mailbox Alerts, Intelligent Phones and Walking Aids. 

Get all the details at the Wibrary at Untangled Life » Nana Technology. As in “Technology for Grandma.”:

Your Washer is Calling and the Dryer is on IM

[via Slashdot]
Laundry Time, an eight-week pilot program from the Internet Home Alliance, begins next week with three Atlanta families and the technology and services of Microsoft, HP, Panasonic, Proctor & Gamble and Whirlpool. The idea is to allow family members to receive alerts and control certain laundry functions from their PCs, cell phones and TV sets, presumably so they can spend more time with their PCs, cell phones and TV sets.  (BTW, click the link to read the story over at NetworkWorld.  It’s pretty funny!)

I am all for tech for the sake of tech, but I’m pretty sure this is one of the signs of the Apocalypse Nostradamus prognosticated.

A Non Touch iPod Coming?

[via GigaOM]

With all the hoopla around wirelessly connected music players, some of them developed by start-ups like Music Gremlins and Zing, many are wondering whether Apple will go that route as well? Who knows, but a report in The China Post, says that the company might be about to introduce a new kind of iPod. In story about Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Taiwan’s largest electronics company, and makers of iPod, there is a curious quote from company chairman Terry Gou…

Apple is about to unveil the next generation of iPod, the best-selling music player in the U.S., using a “none-touch” concept, Gou said without elaborating.

My guess (repeat guess) on this would be a bigger screen video iPod. Connectivity would be nice… but not without battery power.

Virgin installing telemedicine systems in every plane

Virgin Atlantic will be installing telemedicine devices on their entire fleet. The devices called Tempus, produced by Remote Diagnostic Technologies, is for use by non-medical personnel to take a patient's vitals and communicate via satellite with doctors on the ground.

Tempus uses the satellite technology that operates Virgin Atlantic's onboard telephone system to transmit medical information such as pulse rate and blood pressure readings as well as video images to medical experts at the MedAire Centre in Phoenix, Arizona. The ground-based doctors can then diagnose the problem and advise the crew on the next course of action, enabling crew to use their medical training to assist the passenger.Steve Ridgway, chief executive of Virgin Atlantic, welcomed the introduction of the technology;

"The safety and welfare of our passenger is of paramount importance. Virgin Atlantic has used the original telemedicine system, MedLink, for many years, but Tempus' advanced technology significantly increases the airline's onboard medical provision."

Remember when most people didn't have cellphones, but you could make a call from the plane with the Airphone?  Is this technology coming to your living room in the near future?

Read more here

[Via MedGadget]

iPod Sport on the Way?

ipod_sport.jpgHere’s another patent application from Apple that has become public, this one filed on November 24, 2004, outlining a “music synchronization arrangement” for a “computing device.” It’s designed to let the iPod pick out music that plays at the same tempo that your feet hit the ground when exercising, measured by a built-in accelerometer. It also lets you adjust the tempo of the music, and lets you group various songs according to their tempo or “other attributes.”

We already know Apple is keenly interested in exercise and iPods, judging from its recent announcement of its partnership with Nike, where magic shoes talk to the iPod, measuring distance and recording performance. Steve Jobs, in his characteristically upbeat manner, mentioned that it’s “90% accurate out-of-the-box, which is huge.” We’re thinking it would be even huge-er if this turned out to be an “iPod SportPhone” with a GPS device inside that was 100% accurate, a music player, and a cellphone—all in one sleek elegant revolutionary Apple-fied package.

iPod Sport coming from Apple soon? [Unwired View]

iPod Nike Training System

Nikeplus

We read amazing news every day, – but this one will make you say "Wow!!".  Apple and Nike have got together to create a system where your sneakers talk to your iPod Nano and your iPod Nano talks to a website that monitors your fitness regime.

Not only that but your iPod Nano talks to you as you go for your run to let you know how your progress is – and by the click of a button, you can get your "Power Song" on to make sure you get a personal best on this run.

The system includes an attachment for your iPod Nano, a number of smart sneakers and clothing that integrate your player and phones.  Check out the link to see a video ad for the product…Nikeplus

Google moves into virtual worlds

An article in Business 2.0 suggests that Google Earth may become a virtual world like Second Life – just that Google's World will be connected to real events, places and businesses:

You can already download user-generated layers that sit on top of Google's 3-D Earth and show you, for example, the location of celebrity houses or hiking trails or famous landmarks. One dating service has even started showing people looking for partners as a Google Earth layer.

Real estate companies have started showing off virtual versions of their buildings (for sale in the real world) on Google Earth. SketchUp allows them to build entire models of their apartments, right down to the microwave oven.

Where will it end? Google Earth general manager John Hanke has said that Google Earth was partly inspired by Snow Crash's metaverse. At a recent Silicon Valley conference, he described it as a "3-D virtual world."

Future Boy: Google moves into virtual worlds – May. 12, 2006
[via Adverlab]

Warm Watts for Wireless

A tiny new generator that produces electricity from small variations in temperature could turn people into power packs for medical implants and clear the way for complex wireless monitoring systems.

Makers of tiny wireless sensors used for tracking vital signs of people in their homes or watching environmental conditions in large buildings have long faced a power problem: Batteries only last so long. And they can be difficult to replace or recharge in a device implanted, for example, inside a person's thigh.

But a breakthrough in miniaturization promises to tap unlimited power with small, implantable thermoelectric generators capable of producing electricity from ambient heat.

Wired Article  

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