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Tag Archives: Health

This Wheelchair Can’t Do Handstands, But It Can Climb Stairs for You

Robotic Wheelchair

The wheelchairs we have now are limited in functionality in the sense that they’re hard to maneuver when there’s a sharp curve or an obstacle. Don’t even get me started on how useless they are when it comes to stairs (since obviously, they can’t be used on stairs!) That might all change though when these wheelchairs of the future by researchers from the Chiba Institute of Technology are rolled out.

This four-wheel-drive, five-axis robotic wheelchair can climb stairs, ditches, and other obstacles since it’s wheels are ‘transformed’ into legs when the need arises. Team leader Shuro Nakajima, a Chiba associate professor, explains: “The robot has five sensors on its feet, to see if there’s anything nearby. It can also see how far it is from a step.” This is good news to persons with disabilities since their mobility is greatly increased with the features that this wheelchair boasts of.

Pretty awesome, right? You can watch a video of the wheelchair in action after the break.

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Larklife Wristband Helps You Keep Track of Your Life

Larklife

Most people nowadays are too busy to keep a journal or monitor what they’re eating or how much exercise they’re getting. Keeping track of all this stuff isn’t really necessary to having a healthy life, although it can help because you can make lifestyle changes based on your daily records. Unfortunately, it takes a lot of work to jot down all that stuff. But fortunately, there’s something called the Larklife Wristband that can do all that for you.

It’s a splash-resistant (and, by association, sweat-resistant) band that works with an app to monitor your food consumption, sleep habits, and daily activity patterns. It’s also got a neat ‘Refresh’ feature that times productivity breaks for you and gives you productivity coaching to help you make the most of your day.

Hit the break to check out a video of the Larklife Wristband in action.

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Here’s The Poor Man’s Facelift

By David Ponce

No one likes wrinkles, that most depressing of reminders that with each passing day you’re getting one step closer to having both feet firmly planted in your grave. There are all manner of things people do to flatten them out, from going under the knife to rubbing expensive creams on them. In Japan, some people opt for the above. It’s called the Houreisen Face Exercise Mask. It looks silly, and we doubt it even works, but what do we know? It’s a rubbery mask that creates resistance for the muscles in your face, giving them a workout. You’re encouraged to “open and close your mouth for ten minutes each day and you will notice the results.”

Color us skeptical, and at $93, we won’t even try to find out. Not that we have any wrinkles to start with…

[ Product Page ]

Work That Chin Out, My Friends


By David Ponce

You can always count on Japan to come through with things like this. It’s called the “Rhythm Slim Chin Muscle Exercise – Beauty anti-aging face neck jaw pain gadget”. You put it under your chin, press down and hold for 10 seconds. Rest a bit and repeat the process for 3 minutes a day. It’ll work out the frontal part of your neck muscles and allegedly alleviate your aches and cramps while making your sagging skin recede.

I’m skeptical, and at $136 I think I’ll let someone else try it out.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ BookOfJoe ]

Steelcase Walkstation Won’t Let You Stay Fat

By David Ponce

The Holidays are over soon and you’ll get back in the office looking bloated. Come on, you know you are. But that’s ok, because it’ll be the new year and you’ll be full of motivation, determined to lose that gut. But how can you? You spend your entire day at work, sitting in front a desk, not burning any calories. Send your boss this article and explain just how much more productive the office would be if you all had this. It’s called the Steelcase Walkstation and is a workstation that happens to be a treadmill. For one, you’d cost your company less in health insurance. Also, after a while you’d have more energy since there’d be less of you to carry around. Heck, we don’t need to sell you on the benefits of being able to move all day vs. sitting. The Walkstation has a top speed of 2mph and is very silent, as it should in an office. One of the listed features is actually a little funny: “Motor designed to withstand the rigors of slow speeds and possible higher weights for long periods of use (our emphasis).”

Now… they aren’t cheap. $4,400 and up, depending on the sort of accessories you buy with them, such as the movable monitor arm, or other organizational elements; it is an office workstation after all.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Uncrate ]

Glue? Caffeine Is What The kids Are Huffing These Days, Folks

By David Ponce

The Aeroshots are caffeine inhalers. They contain a quick-dissolving powder which may or may not have a taste: take a puff and you get an instant burst of caffeine. Each Aeroshot cartridge contains 100mg of caffeine, or about as much as a large-ish coffee. It can take 6 to 8 shots for the cartridge to empty.

Now we use the word cartridge very deliberately, as we know it’s only a matter of time until some drunk/stoned/confused college kid wanting to study bites on a shotgun shell… and eats a bunch of pellets or something. No really, what’s the worse that can happen if you bite a shotgun shell? Anyone?

We don’t know the price yet, but they’ll hit stores in Boston and New York in 87 days as of this writing.

[ Aeroshots ] VIA [ Geeky Gadgets ]

Autom Personal Weight Loss Coach

Autom Personal Weight Loss Coach (Image courtesy Intuitive Automata)
By Andrew Liszewski

Sticking to a diet or weight loss plan is a lot easier when you have a little positive reinforcement. And that seems to be what inspired MIT alum Cory Kidd to create Autom. She’s billed as a robotic weight loss coach, but that’s maybe being a little generous with the term ‘robot’. Her head and eyes do move, but otherwise she’s mostly just a stationary touchscreen tablet that lets you keep track of your nutritional and exercise habits. It’s her software, though, that makes Autom really effective. Every day multiple users can have conversations with her where they input their meals, or how much physical activity they got in throughout the day. Autom will then provide praise, or encouragement, depending on how close they are to achieving their weight loss goals.

I actually think it’s a great way to help a diet be successful, I just wish Autom wasn’t so expensive. She’s available for pre-order for just $195, but when she ships the remaining balance is an additional $670. For a total of $865, plus a monthly subscription plan of $79.95! I’m not sure how that compares to other weight loss plans, but it seems all of Autom’s functionality could also be provided via a considerably cheaper iPad app.

[ Autom Personal Weight Loss Coach ] VIA [ Automaton ]

GE’s Optima MR430s Compact MRI Machine Targets Just Limbs

GE Optima MR430s MRI Machine (Image courtesy GE)
By Andrew Liszewski

While it can be an essential tool for diagnosing what’s wrong with a patient, MRI machines are large, noisy, expensive and can be extremely uncomfortable to be inside. Many people find them cramped and claustrophobic, which can be particularly difficult since you have to lie perfectly still for long periods of time to get a clean image. So GE has created a considerably smaller MRI machine that’s specifically designed to be used for imaging a patient’s limb.

Besides requiring smaller rooms and being considerably more affordable for a hospital, the new Optima MR430s is also far more comfortable for the patient. They sit or recline in an adjustable padded chair and insert their arm or leg into the machine. And since they’re more comfortable while the MRI is doing its thing, they’re less prone to moving about which results in clearer images and results. What sets GE’s new compact MRI machine apart from other compact solutions is that it still uses a powerful 1.5T (Teslas) magnet which means there are no compromises when it comes to image quality. And while the MR430s is limited in that it can only handle limbs, it does free up a hospital’s full-body machine when only a limited part of a patient’s body needs to be imaged.

[ GE Optima MR430s MRI Machine ] VIA [ GreenBiz ]

BabySound Fetal Heart Rate Monitor

BabySound Fetal Heart Rate Monitor (Image courtesy Chinavasion)
By Andrew Liszewski

Even if you don’t have kids, we all know that a baby can be expensive. And finding a way to save money and make every dollar count is an important part of raising a family. So instead of going to an expensive obstetrician for regular checkups during your pregnancy, you can now monitor your baby at home and save! Chinavasion’s selling this BabySound fetal heart rate monitor for ~$23 that lets you keep tabs on your unborn infant’s heartbeat. Whether it be for peace of mind, for listening for worrisome anomalies, or just plain curiosity. It’s apparently completely safe to use, and is sensitive enough to pick up a heart beat from as early as 10-12 weeks in to your pregnancy.

And from what I can tell, it’s probably still useful after your child is born too. When placed against a bedroom door it could be used to monitor private conversations or phone calls. Perfect for the concerned parent who develops into a nosy one.

[ BabySound Fetal Heart Rate Monitor ] VIA [ 7Gadgets ]