The computer, an update to the Jaguar system, is operated in Tennessee by Oak Ridge National Laboratory, part of the DOE's network of research labs. Researchers from academia, government labs, and various industries will be able to use Titan -- believed to be one of the two most powerful machines in the world -- to research things such as climate change and … Read more
True story. A few years ago, I got a concussion at a baseball game -- and not because a ball hit me in the head. When my friend and I simultaneously turned and leaned in to talk, her head hit mine with such force I thought I had broken my nose. My doctor, however, said all signs pointed toward a concussion. Did I mention it was a Giants game? Go, Giants!
World Series aside, had I been wearing a new impact-sensing skullcap from Reebok and startup MC10, I might have immediately known whether I needed medical treatment or rest before resuming play, which in my case involved sitting on a bench trying to explain baseball to CNET's Swedish summer interns.
The sensor-laden mesh cap provides colored LED readouts that vary according to the level of impact, thus providing instant information on the gravity of the blow. It should be commercially available to consumers early next year, "essentially serving as an extra set of eyes on the ice -- or any other playing field," MC10 says. … Read more
Researchers at Boston Children's Hospital had the bright idea that, since kids with anger-control problems tend to resist psychotherapy but enjoy video games, the researchers should develop a game that sneakily helps kids practice emotion-control skills -- and in the process perhaps reduces the need for medication.
The game, called RAGE Control (short for Regulate and Gain Emotional Control), employs a finger heart rate monitor; users with elevated heart rates actually lose the ability to shoot enemy spaceships. Researchers say the idea is to teach kids to better control their emotional responses -- and specifically to reduce outbursts of … Read more
Your smartphone could soon become a combination personal trainer and DJ.
Thanks to headphones that can measure your heart rate and acceleration, and a smartphone app that can identify which songs on your phone will help you reach your target heart rate, you won't have to guess which playlist best suits your next jog.… Read more
As a child, I used to concentrate really hard on things like pencils and pebbles, trying to get them to budge with the sheer power of my mind. It never worked, but technology is getting us a little closer to the mind control dream. The Muse brainwave-sensing headband from Interaxon is a step in the right direction.
The Muse uses two sensors on the forehead and two behind the ears. You wear it positioned kind of like a pair of glasses. It measures your brainwaves and sends the information to a smartphone or tablet. Viewing that data in real time can show you if your mind is wandering, if you're relaxed, or if you're in a state of intense concentration.… Read more
While sci-fi-style advancements like bionic eyes that help restore human vision might be getting closer to reality, everyday gadgets like smartphones can still pose major hurdles to the blind and visually impaired.
A new device called Ray aims to make the smartphone space friendlier to the sight-challenged by integrating standard smartphone capabilities with the functions of specialty devices that many blind consumers now pair with basic mobile phones to create a full smartphone experience.
Rather than having to rely on audio-book readers, navigation tools, raised Braille labels, special bar-code scanners, and large-buttoned and voice-enabled MP3 players, therefore, they can turn to just one device. … Read more
Ah, pagers -- still beloved by a wide range of users, from physicians to restaurant hostesses to bird watchers to drug dealers.
And given the simple telecommunication tech has been around for more than half a century, it should come as no surprise that it is gradually being replaced -- at least in hospital settings -- by cell phones.
That's according to an electronic survey administered by researchers out of the University of Kansas and presented this week at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) National Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans.… Read more
While wheelchair design is advancing, allowing chairs to do things like move sideways and diagonally and follow the person next to them, stairs and curbs remain a formidable hurdle for all but a few models. It's an obstacle, however, that Japanese researchers are looking to overcome.
A team at Chiba Institute of Technology has rolled out a new robotic wheelchair that can climb over steps, ditches, and other roadblocks. The four-wheel-drive, five-axis vehicle maneuvers like a typical wheelchair -- except when it encounters an obstacle. Then it uses its wheels like legs. … Read more
The X1 is focused on either helping or hindering a person's legs, depending on its job description. When it's set to inhibit, the X1 resists movement and could be used to help astronauts exercise in space. When it's set to help, it could be used to assist paraplegics and others with lower body injuries with walking.
Four motorized joints and six passive joints give the 57-pound suit a good range of motion. It also gives it some nice Iron Man flavor, minus the propulsion feet.… Read more
A little shock now and again can be good for you, if you happen to be a bedridden patient at risk of developing bedsores and the shock is delivered through your underwear at very specific intervals.
So says a team of doctors at the University of Calgary, who recently tested their "Smart-e-Pants" on 37 patients with spinal cord injuries -- some of the most challenging patients because they can neither move nor feel when bedsores are forming.
The researchers found that by placing two pads of electrodes on each, er, cheek, and stimulating each patient's backside for … Read more