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February 26, 2015 Leah Bortz

ICYMI: Automation News Roundup, Week Ending Feb. 27

Come Fly with Me

Last week, a GE Intelligent Platforms blog post used a personal account to detail how airlines are starting to adapt to new technology.

Courtesy Ryan McGuire

Courtesy Ryan McGuire

Specifically, to multi-touch.  A projective-capacitive screen that uses the same”PCAP” technology as most tablets or smartphones was used for viewing movies on board the flight.

This adaptation comes at the perfect time, as most resistive touch screens are being phased out of the commercial market. Because once a customer experiences a capacitive screen, they simply don’t want to go back.

“Surprisingly, the vast majority of industrial touch screens still use analog-resistive touch technology. If an equipment manufacturer wants to outshine the competitors, the most bang for the buck may be to upgrade from the outdated resistive technology to a modern capacitive touchscreen,” according to Tom Craven’s blog post.

Technology in Education: It’s Changing, Too

Technology is significantly changing the way students learn, according to an article published by Forbes.

Gone are the days of a simple notebook and pencil. Today, the average student of higher education carries with them a laptop, smartphone and/or a tablet, and even a gaming system. The article warns, however, that in order to capitalize on these new forms of learning, educational institutions must formulate a plan that complements the learning process.

Photo courtesy startupstockphotos.com

Photo courtesy startupstockphotos.com

The article mentioned that MIT has even adapted cloud-based technology to run their Bits and Atoms Fabrication Laboratories.

“These Fab Labs allow students to design inventions from musical instruments to circuit boards to prosthetic limbs, and since they are equipped with open-sourced software, students from around the globe can work together to test and refine each other’s projects,” according to the article published in Forbes. 

Bionic Eye Changes Man’s Life

Medical News Today (MDT) reported an emotional story of one man who suffered from a degenerative condition known as retinitis pigmentosa and was effectively blind for ten years.

After quitting his professional career, he learned to adjust his lifestyle to the best of his ability.

However, thanks to a retinal prosthesis made possible by Mayo Clinic, he is now able to make out the basic forms of people and objects, including his reflection in a mirror.

In the touching video, he sees his wife for the first time in over a decade.

“The eye implant that he now has works by bypassing the damaged retina and sending light wave signals directly to the optic nerve. A small chip was attached to the back of the eye with multiple electrodes offering 60 points of stimulation,” reported MNT. 

This new technology could impact the way wounded soldiers are treated, and could possibly give sight back to those with advanced forms of diabetes and glaucoma.

 A Social Networking Tee

Social networking has actually reached a new level- wearable social networking technology. 

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

A design group composed of MIT’s Tangible Media Group and the Fluid Interface Group have dreamed up a T-shirt that can signal “to other wearers your interests, associations and even if people are compatible organ donors,” reported CNN. 

The MIT students wanted to investigate how the relationship between users and social media could change once you take away  a computer screen.

“While what you wear is very public, social media is able to show who you are to thousands more people and this creates really big social consequences but it often doesn’t feel that way,” said MIT student, Viirj Kan, in the CNN article.

Big Data May Stop Money Laundering

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

Photo courtesy freeimages.com

Criminals have relied heavily upon international trade to safely and inconspicuously hide the illegal goods/funds across borders in recent years. But, CIO suggests a somewhat unlikely hero: Big Data.

Big data analytics might just help track and monitor money laundering and other illicit transactions before they are gone unnoticed.

After all, there are a “sea of documents generated by this activity  — the commercial invoices, bills of lading, insurance certificates, inspection certificates, certificates of origin and more — that make it so difficult to see what’s truly happening may also be the point of vulnerability.”

Media we link to:

“The Sky’s the Limit When it Comes to Multi-Touch” – GE Intelligent Platforms blog 

“How to Leverage Technology to Navigate a Changing Educational Landscape” – Forbes 

“‘Bionic’ eye allows man to see wife for first time in a decade” – Medical News Today 

“Mayo Clinic patient’s first impressions with bionic eye” – Mayo Clinic

“The social network that you can wear” – CNN 

“How Big Data Analytics Can Help Track Money Laundering” – CIO 

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