Finally Good News http://finallygoodnews.net Your dosage of good news and positive perspectives from the frontline Tue, 21 Nov 2017 08:50:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.3 http://finallygoodnews.net/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/cropped-finallygoodnews-logo1-32x32.png Finally Good News http://finallygoodnews.net 32 32 48449532 Trees Return to the Amazon http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/11/21/trees-return-to-the-amazon/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/11/21/trees-return-to-the-amazon/#respond Tue, 21 Nov 2017 08:48:11 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3123 Reseeding Millions of Acres in the Most Deforested Area in the World Decades of abuse and misuse have resulted in the loss of millions of acres of Amazon forests, as well as the destruction of the world’s most biodiverse ecosystem. And because everything is connected, this abuse of the largest […]

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Reseeding Millions of Acres in the Most Deforested Area in the World

Decades of abuse and misuse have resulted in the loss of millions of acres of Amazon forests, as well as the destruction of the world’s most biodiverse ecosystem. And because everything is connected, this abuse of the largest rainforest in the world decimated the economy of local populations and spiked Brazil’s contribution to greenhouse gases. Now there is good news as billions of seeds are being planted in Brazil’s Amazon forest.

A massive project is underway to re-seed roughly 70,000 acres of forest land with 73 million new trees. The project is taking place in what is known as the “arc of deforestation.” Dr. M. Sanjayan, Conservation International’s CEO said, “This is a breathtakingly audacious project.” He said this the most ambitious forest reforestation project ever undertaken in the world. If they can get it right here, he says, the Amazon’s 25 million residents and the entire world will reap immeasurable benefits. The project will also go a long way toward helping Brazil meet its 2030 Paris Agreement obligations.

The Arc of Deforestation

Brazil is home to the world’s largest rainforest. Hosts of native populations, many of whom have never deviated from thousands of years of tradition survive on Brazil’s richly biodiverse environment. Tragically, conflicting values and priorities resulted in one of the largest deforestation undertakings in the world.
Almost half of the entire world’s tropical deforestation has taken place in what is known as the “arc of deforestation.” Brazil’s forests were cleared to make way for agricultural lands, the result of competing interests of becoming a global giant in the production of coffee, beef, sugar, and poultry. The lack of strategic planning meant that not only were the rainforests destroyed, but farming also suffered. Deforestation resulted in the entire ecosystem going out of balance, which impacted soil health, resulting actually in lower yields of agricultural produce. Further, Brazil became the 4th largest contributor to climate change.

Seeding Back to the Future

The project is employing a new technique known as muvuca, which was developed a few years ago in Brazil. Muvuca means many people in a very small place in Portuguese. Workers will plant 200 native species of seeds over every inch of the deforested lands. Saplings are much more labor-intensive, and they may or may not adapt to the environment. While not all seeds will survive, those that do turn into healthy, robust trees that have become completely acclimated to the soil and environment. The success rate is much higher. The primary focus area of this massive undertaking is in the southern Amazonas, Acre, Para, Rondonia, and continuing through the Xingu watershed. To date, one million seeds have been planted.

More good news is that if the project succeeds in Brazil, it can be replicated elsewhere. Conservation International and its partners, the Global Environment Facility, Brazilian Ministry of Environment, Brazilian Biodiversity Fund and the World Bank hope that the success of this project will become a role model of how to undertake massive reforestation projects at an affordable cost. The plan is to take this success and apply it to other areas of deforestation around the world.

 

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Healthcare Technology is Looks like Science Fiction http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/11/14/healthcare-technology-looks-like-science-fiction/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/11/14/healthcare-technology-looks-like-science-fiction/#respond Tue, 14 Nov 2017 13:55:23 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3119 Futuristic Technology is Radically Transforming Healthcare Delivery Even the quickest glance at digital and print media will reveal the amazing leaps in technology development coming from the greatest minds in the world today. Perhaps one of the most radicalized sectors is medicine, where cutting-edge, almost science-fiction technology apps and gadgets […]

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Futuristic Technology is Radically Transforming Healthcare Delivery

Even the quickest glance at digital and print media will reveal the amazing leaps in technology development coming from the greatest minds in the world today. Perhaps one of the most radicalized sectors is medicine, where cutting-edge, almost science-fiction technology apps and gadgets are improving healthcare delivery and saving lives. This is good news for billions of people around the world. Here is a brief look at two of the most exciting healthcare apps to emerge this year.

Brain Composer

Taking mental telepathy to an entirely new level, Brain Composer is a breakthrough app that allows the user to compose music with only his or her thoughts. Researchers at Graz University of Technology used a technology known as brain-computer interfaces, to develop an app that can read the user’s brainwaves. In this way, the user can control external devices just by thinking about it. This is an incredible technology for the millions of paralyzed individuals. It opens doors to levels of creativity and production never before imagined.

Tissue Nanotransfection

Ohio State University researchers have developed a nanotech chip that can be inserted under the skin of an injured limb. For example, following an automobile accident, in which the leg is severely injured, the nanotech chip would be inserted and the patient’s skin cells would begin converting into healthy cells that heal the wound. This is very good news for the countless number of injuries seen in emergency rooms across the country every year.

The technology consists of the chip itself which delivers specific biological messages to the skin cells. Then there are the instructions. Known as “cargo” these instructions tell the cells exactly what transformation they need to make to bring about healing. The instructions are delivered via a small electrical charge that is unfelt by the patient.

The technology has seen success in mouse trials. Human trials are expected to begin next year.

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Angela Luna Brings Good News to Refugees with Life-Saving Jackets http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/10/23/angela-luna-brings-good-news-refugees-life-saving-jackets/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/10/23/angela-luna-brings-good-news-refugees-life-saving-jackets/#respond Mon, 23 Oct 2017 11:15:23 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3111 Designing Clothes that Save Lives Angela Luna is 23 years old. She was recently named to the Forbes “30 Under 30 Art & Design” list. Angela Luna is a clothing designer. But, Angela is about much more than just fashion. Overwhelmingly inspired by the plight of refugees around the world, […]

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Designing Clothes that Save Lives

Angela Luna is 23 years old. She was recently named to the Forbes “30 Under 30 Art & Design” list. Angela Luna is a clothing designer. But, Angela is about much more than just fashion. Overwhelmingly inspired by the plight of refugees around the world, particularly Syrian refugees, Angela took a radical departure from what she thought would be her lane. Her incredible work is very good news for the millions of displaced persons living in harsh conditions around the globe.

A Senior Year of Revelation and Action

Angela Luna

Angela Luna – Image: Linkedin

Angela began her new mission during her last year of study at Parsons School of Design. She was moved initially by what became a viral photo of a 3-year old Syrian boy whose body washed up on the shore. Heartbroken and stirred to action, Angela pulled together all available refugee statistics. As of late 2016 when she undertook her thesis project, there were 65.3 million forcibly displaced persons and 21.3 million refugees. She decided to use her 2016 senior thesis project to explore the concept of designing clothes that would also save lives.

With Seed Money From her Mother, A New Way to Help Refugees is born

Angela’s mother gave her $7,000 for her thesis project. With this money, Angela was able to design nine prototypes. Among her pilot designs was what she named the [In]visible jacket. The idea for this prototype came about following a trip Angela took before graduation. She spent several months visiting refugee camps in Turkey and Greece. While there, a tragic death of a mother and her child occurred. They were returning to the camp in the dark, following a very long walk to the grocery store. They were struck on the road because the driver did not see them. The [In]visible jacket is 100% waterproof. But more importantly, it has two sides. One side is reflective silver and the other side is camouflage. This way, whether the user needs to hide or be seen, this one jacket offers them the protection they need.

Angela Luna’s line of life-saving clothing includes a collection of jackets that transform into tents, sleeping bags, and backpacks. There is a jacket specially designed to carry children. All of the jackets are waterproof, Unisex, are adjustable to fit a variety of body types and can be worn no matter the environmental conditions.

Disrupting the Fashion Industry Narrative

Angela’s designs were motivated by a desire to develop practical solutions to the problems she saw, such as lack of shelter, warmth, ability to move quickly, transport small children, hide, or to be seen.

However, even more than this, Angela intends to completely disrupt the fashion narrative that the industry is only about creating items for consumerism. She doesn’t want designers to be perceived as being out of touch with the problems in the world. Angela wants to use the fashion industry to drive awareness and build aid for the world’s enormous displaced persons population. She founded Adiff Clothing to actualize this vision.

Angela’s tenacity and forward-thinking approach is good news for the refugees receiving her life-saving jackets. Her work continues.

 

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FIDF Helps Israeli Soldiers from Difficult Backgrounds http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/09/28/fidf-helps-israeli-soldiers-difficult-backgrounds-make-best-military-service/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/09/28/fidf-helps-israeli-soldiers-difficult-backgrounds-make-best-military-service/#respond Thu, 28 Sep 2017 07:54:16 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3104 While many 18-year-olds around the world are heading off to university, their Israeli counterparts are putting on their uniforms. They are about to begin an intensive term of military service: a huge transition from schoolwork and soccer games with friends. The responsibility is overwhelming – in addition to the typical […]

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While many 18-year-olds around the world are heading off to university, their Israeli counterparts are putting on their uniforms. They are about to begin an intensive term of military service: a huge transition from schoolwork and soccer games with friends. The responsibility is overwhelming – in addition to the typical worries of young adulthood, such as finding a job and getting an education, these young people are preparing to defend their country.

The army can be a challenging experience for young soldiers, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds. Friends of the IDF (FIDF) aims to make their lives a little easier and turn their military service into an opportunity for personal and professional development. Established in 1981, FIDF is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that sponsors social, cultural, and educational programs for soldiers during and after their service. With branches around the world, reaching from San Francisco to Panama, FIDF is an anchor for soldiers during and after their service.

Help at Every Stage

FIDF’s projects cover a wide range of needs, from the first day on the army base to the complicated reentry into civilian society. The nonprofit’s flagship initiative, the IMPACT! Scholarship Program pays for the academic tuition of former combat soldiers from disadvantaged backgrounds. Participants receive a full university scholarship in exchange for 130 hours of community service. IMPACT! is only one of several FIDF initiatives designed to help discharged soldiers lead a successful and happy life, ensuring that they can get an education and find satisfying work no matter their background.

In addition, FIDF provides a variety of services for current soldiers. Many soldiers from underprivileged homes have to stop working and supporting their families when they join the military. Naturally, they worry that their families will struggle financially without them. The DIGNITY Program furnishes basic household needs for these soldiers and their families so that the household doesn’t suffer from their recruitment.

FIDF also offers courses in ethics, philosophy, and Jewish studies, giving soldiers an opportunity for intellectual exploration and self-discovery. Other projects for current soldiers include the SPIRIT program, which sponsors recreational activities for combat soldiers, and the construction of “soldiers’ homes” throughout Israel for young men and women who may not have a home to return to.

Adopt-a-Brigade – Mentorship, Support, and Fun

Perhaps the most ambitious of FIDF’s initiatives is the Adopt-a-Brigade Project. In partnership with the Israeli nonprofit Ametz Lochem (Adopt-a-Soldier), FIDF invites business leaders, influential companies and international organizations to “adopt” an IDF brigade. Adopters host holiday celebrations for the brigade, arrange sports days and outings and sponsor events for outstanding soldiers. They are a continuous source of financial and emotional empowerment for the soldiers in their brigade and often maintain a supportive relationship with them after their service. Since its foundation, the FIDF and Ametz Lochem have facilitated the adoption of more than 20 IDF brigades.

Former Airforce Combat Navigator Adopts His Old Brigade

Among these noteworthy adopters is Israeli businessman Meir Shamir, the CEO of the Mivtach Shamir investment company and head of the Israeli Taglit (Birthright) society. Having fought in the 69th Squadron of the Israeli Air Force during the Yom Kippur War, he knows firsthand the difficulties facing young soldiers – and so he chose to give back, adopting the squadron in which he once served. “The air force’s ground crews who get up at 3 in the morning in the middle of the winter… need to know that there are other people who see them, who appreciate their work, and who do not take them for granted,” he says.

In the end, this is the aim of Adopt-a-Brigade and FIDF: to remind these 18-year-olds that, even with so much responsibility on their shoulders, they are not alone in the world.

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How to Help the Victims of Hurricane Irma http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/09/26/help-victims-hurricane-irma/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/09/26/help-victims-hurricane-irma/#respond Tue, 26 Sep 2017 11:22:08 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3099 Hurricane Irma left a swath of destruction in its wake as it tore through communities in the Caribbean Islands, the Florida Keys and then mainland Florida and South Carolina. Its raging winds and rain pummeled Cuba and the Caribbean as a category 5 hurricane, killing more than 40 people. At […]

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Hurricane Irma left a swath of destruction in its wake as it tore through communities in the Caribbean Islands, the Florida Keys and then mainland Florida and South Carolina. Its raging winds and rain pummeled Cuba and the Caribbean as a category 5 hurricane, killing more than 40 people. At least 60 people were killed by the then category 4 Irma as it flooded major population centers, including Charleston, South Carolina and Jacksonville, Florida.

One of the most soul-stirring outcomes, and perhaps the only good news in the story of these hurricanes has been the outpouring of kindness and eagerness to help. Ordinary citizens performed extraordinary feats to save perfect strangers. Without citizen action, it is highly likely that many more deaths would have resulted from these devastating hurricanes.

Irma has gone out to Sea, Now What?

This is the perfect time to get involved in assisting the victims of Hurricane Irma. Once storms move on and the media shifts its attention to the new story of the day, it is easy to forget about what happened. In the interim many fraud fundraising drives have been initiated, as well as charity events or calls to action by fraudsters.

If you want to help the victims of Hurricane Irma, there are four basic categories of assistance that are required: blood, money, shelter, and time. Here are a few ways to get involved.

Donations

If you would like to write a check or give a cash donation to assist the victims of Hurricane Irma, carefully identify a legitimate list of public and private sector relief agencies. For instance, United Way has several chapters active in the impacted Florida communities. United Way of Miami-Dade and United Way of Broward County, which has partnered with the Greater Miami Jewish Federation, are in need of donations to enable them to provide direct relief to hurricane victims. The Miami Foundation has initiated a special fund that is assisting victims of Hurricane Irma in Florida and in the Caribbean Islands, particularly Barbuda and the U.S. Virgin Islands, both of which were assaulted again by Hurricane Maria.

Religious Institutions

All Florida religious institutions are involved in the effort to provide basic services to Irma’s victims, including Catholic Charities, Muslim Federation and the Greater Miami Jewish Federation. These charities need your financial support to deliver food, clothing, and water to hurricane victims. Also delivering food to hurricane victims is Food for the Poor, a nonprofit with an established track record of providing food to the poor in the Caribbean and Latin American communities. It is now fulfilling the same role closer to home. Many other Florida nonprofits are engaged in the effort, such as Bridge to Hope which is focused on the most vulnerable of the hurricane’s victims—the elderly, homeless and chronically impoverished.

Shelter

If you have space in your home there are two amazing platforms where you can offer housing for Irma’s victims. You can put a listing on Airbnb or HomeAway, both of which have set up special portals for people to list their homes for the benefit of hurricane victims. You can also alert the Red Cross and other foundations operating in the Florida area if you have a spare room or you are a landlord and have empty apartments.

Time

If you want to volunteer your time and help rebuild communities, get in touch with the Red Cross. Additionally, all of the relief agencies listed above need volunteer manpower to deliver food, diapers, bottled water, clothing, toys, and other supplies to the victims of Hurricane Irma, many of whom are still in shelters.

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A Robo-bartender serves up a Mean Bloody Mary in Las Vegas http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/09/17/robo-bartender/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/09/17/robo-bartender/#comments Sun, 17 Sep 2017 07:45:31 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3092 Internet of Things Hits the Bar The world appears to be operating in high-tech hyper-speed. Every day a new technology is disrupting long-standing paradigms and pushing us further into new frontiers. The emergence of Internet of Things (IoT) has brought good news to millions of people around the world and […]

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Internet of Things Hits the Bar

The world appears to be operating in high-tech hyper-speed. Every day a new technology is disrupting long-standing paradigms and pushing us further into new frontiers. The emergence of Internet of Things (IoT) has brought good news to millions of people around the world and made many impossibilities possible. Restricted initially to the laboratories or pages of geek magazines, IoT has recently entered our homes, vastly improving many facets of daily existence with smart kitchen appliances, climate control gadgets, household security apps, and more. Now IoT experts are exploring new premises, among them the neighborhood bar. Meet the Robo-barman!

Robo-Barmen Deliver with Speed and Precision

Cocktail

As of July 2017 visitors to a watering hole in a Las Vegas shopping center can order their favorite cocktail from Tipsy, who they say serves an outstanding Bloody Mary. Tipsy is a Robo-barman, and he’s not the only one. Monsieur and Tended Bar are two additional brands of Robo-bartenders that can multitask and serve customers much more quickly than a human could. As a customer, all you have to do is select your drink (or cocktail) from a digital menu and within a few minutes it will be poured and served to you by the efficient robot, no questions asked. For customers, Robo-bartenders offer a cool futuristic experience, for bar owners, they offer an opportunity to cut expenses and improve the bottom line, but what about human bartenders? Should they be looking for a new line of work?

Who’ll Give You Advice on Your Love Life?

So far, the league of Robo-bartenders is small, but it could be the future. Tipsy appears to have developed quite a fan following in Vegas. Most likely the appeal is the Star Wars like experience of being served your favorite drink by a sleek robot. Nevertheless, it is still a machine, and human interaction is an essential part of the bar experience. How many have poured their hearts out to their favorite bartender, enjoyed his/her nonjudgmental yet blunt advice, or simply felt comforted by the notion that there is someone behind the bar who will let them indulge in self-pity for the night but make sure they don’t cross the red line? Well, Tipsy is not going to be so good with that aspect of the job, he isn’t programmed to do the empathy thing.

Is There a Future for the Robo-Bartender?

Robo-bartenders work great in busy environments, where there are large crowds anxious to be served quickly and fairly, uninterested in long conversations or a tattooed shoulder to cry on. Airports, hotels, sports arenas, cruise ships and shopping malls that are crowded and noisy are the perfect environment for them. They’re also great as part of a human- based team, they can certainly lighten the burden during peak hours. However, they probably will never fully replace the human bartender. As Michael Dyer, a former computer science professor at UCLA, points out, bartenders have multiple and complex tasks and robots can only perform some of them as well as humans. So choosing whether or not to automate a bar is ultimately a question of balancing costs and benefits. For those of us who still don’t have a robotic bar-tender, here is a cool Bloody Mary recipe you can easily make on your own:

Check out How to Make Fabulous Cilantro Bloody Mary’s by Claire Morgan on Snapguide.

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A 25,000 sq. feet rooftop garden makes IGA in Canada King of Green http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/08/31/iga-canada-king-of-green/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/08/31/iga-canada-king-of-green/#respond Thu, 31 Aug 2017 11:04:34 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3067 Canadian Supermarket Disrupts the Green Roof Concept When tasked by the local government with the job of making their roof green, IGA Famille Duchemin, a large supermarket in St. Laurent, Canada, decided to take things to the next level. Rather than employing green energy technologies, they built a 25,000 square […]

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Canadian Supermarket Disrupts the Green Roof Concept

When tasked by the local government with the job of making their roof green, IGA Famille Duchemin, a large supermarket in St. Laurent, Canada, decided to take things to the next level. Rather than employing green energy technologies, they built a 25,000 square foot organic garden on the roof of their store.

Buying Local

IGA Extra,boulevard Henri-Bourassa ouest, St-Laurent, Qc
The Duchemin family, owners of the store now have the distinction of creating the largest rooftop garden in Canada. This is good news for Canadians looking for the freshest fruits and vegetables. Store customers can select from the “fresh from the roof” section—better than the morning delivery from the nearest organic farm. Richard Duchemin, one of the family owners observed that consumers like to purchase from local growers. Well, it does not get more local than the store roof.

Everything Certified Organic

The IGA rooftop garden includes more than 30 different varieties of vegetables, such as kale, tomatoes, eggplant, beets, and herbs. Plants are in soil and not hydroponic. All the produce is certified organic. The garden’s irrigation system is fueled by moisture that is extracted from the store’s system of dehumidification machines, utilizing water that would have been thrown away. And, the garden’s rows are in the shape of the IGA logo, serving also as a great piece of PR for passengers flying over from Montreal’s international airport.

Not Just Vegetables

IGA has plans for the future. At present, there are eight beehives operating at full capacity in the garden, with expected production levels of around 600 jars of honey each year. This is also good news, as there has been a worldwide problem with bee populations and a drop in honey production. Store owners hope to also offer fresh cut flowers. Though the flowers are being planted primarily to assist with pest control, they will also bring beauty to the home and heart.
The Duchemin IGA is not new to being green. They have already been certified LEED Gold, achieving the highest rating possible for green buildings. The Duchemins are hoping that their store will serve as inspiration and a model for other supermarkets, restaurants, and all kinds of establishments where food is prepared or sold. Maximizing the full expanse of an establishment’s edifice, in an organic and sustainable way contributes not only to the health of consumers but to the entire planet.

Join the Revolution and Make Your Own Window Garden

You don’t have to be a major grocery store to enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables grown on-site. Even if you have a small home, little extra space, and no dirt for a single plant, you can still enjoy growing your own produce. It is the best way to benefit from a clean, organic and fresh food supply. For instance, you can create a window farm, utilizing a system of recycled plastic containers, connected by tubes that transfer a constant supply of nutrient-rich liquid soil. Depending upon the amount of sunlight your home receives, you might be able to harvest your favorite fruits and vegetables year-round. Plus it will give you endless hours of enjoyment and personal satisfaction.

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Technology Developers Turn Their Eyes toward Improving Lives http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/08/15/technology-developers-turn-eyes-toward-improving-lives/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/08/15/technology-developers-turn-eyes-toward-improving-lives/#comments Tue, 15 Aug 2017 09:23:51 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3020 Technology Developers are disrupting the Healthcare Industry Healthcare technology developers are pushing the envelope of app and medical product innovation, which is very good news for consumers around the world. Advances in healthcare technologies mean healthier populations and better access to treatment when needed. It also eliminates unnecessary visits to […]

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Technology Developers are disrupting the Healthcare Industry

Healthcare technology developers are pushing the envelope of app and medical product innovation, which is very good news for consumers around the world. Advances in healthcare technologies mean healthier populations and better access to treatment when needed. It also eliminates unnecessary visits to doctors, hospitals and costly procedures.

Moving past entertainment and lifestyle apps, some of the largest technology companies in the world are expanding their creativity to saving lives. Apple, for instance, is making significant strides in their efforts to incorporate a blood sugar tracker in their Apple watch. Still, under wraps, the technology will be a life changer for millions of diabetes sufferers who must closely monitor their blood sugar levels on a routine basis. A less invasive method, such as what will be provided by Apple’s smartwatch, will be good news for diabetes patients.

Apple watch -Blood sugar tracker

Apple Watch Photo: PEXELS

Contact Lenses to Detect Diabetes

Researchers at UNIST and the Internal Medicine Department of Kyungpook National University are working on a smart contact lens that will monitor glucose levels in the wearer, serving as an early-warning system for diabetes, glaucoma, and other conditions tied to hyperglycemia. The sensors are actually electrodes constructed from transparent and highly flexible graphene sheets. There will also be a wireless antenna embedded in the sensor. The goal is that patients will be able to self-monitor their blood sugar levels and the antenna will transmit important medical data directly to their physicians.

Wearables Are Empowering Patients in Self-Care

Researchers have developed a 3D printed wearable sensor that is worn in the ear. The sensors detect fluctuations in body temperature, which if present, are transmitted via Bluetooth to a smartphone app that can be accessed by the wearer’s healthcare professional. Fluctuations in body temperature could indicate problems with metabolic function.

Some Healthcare Technology Development is More Organic

Away from the bells and whistles of wearable and 3D printing, and IoT technology is the Swedish School of Textiles where researchers are developing a reusable sanitary napkin. Scientists Lena Berglin and Karin Hogberg are working on something called SpacerPAD specifically for women in developing countries. Hogberg, who spent some time in Kenya, observed the difficulties women experience living in the slums of the country’s inner city, in crowded conditions, without access to proper materials for their menstrual cycle. The women resorted to rags, but in countries where menstruation is very much a taboo subject, even this approach causes problems. The SpacerPAD is constructed from recycled materials which means the woman can rinse it out after use and following a quick dry, she can use the same pad once again. At the end of her cycle, she can boil the pads to remove any bacterial growth.

Amazon Goes Underground with its own Research Laboratory

Even the online giant Amazon has joined the world of healthcare technology development. Their secret development laboratory, code-named 1492, is working on a number of initiatives designed to improve healthcare delivery. For instance, researchers are developing a platform that would retrieve data from electronic medical records that could be transmitted to doctors and consumers, making a channel for telemedicine. This is good news for many consumers who simply do not have the time to visit the doctor’s office, or are reluctant to go for personal reasons.

 


from CNBC.

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Helping Children With Cerebral Palsy Walk Without Pain http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/07/31/helping-children-cerebral-palsy-walk-without-pain/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/07/31/helping-children-cerebral-palsy-walk-without-pain/#respond Mon, 31 Jul 2017 14:31:36 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=3003 Engineers Develop a Robotic Device to Help Children with Cerebral Palsy Cerebral Palsy (CP) is one of the most common motor disabilities in America. Worldwide, the CDC cites a prevalence factor of as much as 4 in 1,000 births. The exact cause of CP is not known, but it appears […]

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Engineers Develop a Robotic Device to Help Children with Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy (CP) is one of the most common motor disabilities in America. Worldwide, the CDC cites a prevalence factor of as much as 4 in 1,000 births. The exact cause of CP is not known, but it appears to be related to brain damage that occurs either at birth or during the first three years of the child’s life. By impairing the child’s motor ability and muscle tone, CP makes it difficult and painful for the child to walk. Most are no longer able to walk at all by the time they reach the age of 30.

Learning to Walk

Engineers at Columbia University set out to improve the walking ability of children with CP. They were primarily focused on the abnormal gait which causes long-term damage and pain to their joints. The outcome of their research exceeded expectations offering very good news for the more than 500,000 children with cerebral palsy in the United States.

A Robotic Belt

The researchers and engineers at Columbia worked with a study group of six boys who were between the ages of 9 to 19. All of them were exhibiting something known as “crouch gait”, which develops due to muscle deterioration. The robotic belt was filled with weights and attached to the boys who then walked on a treadmill. The weights actually made walking more difficult, but it was hoped that the robotic belt would strengthen the muscles in their calves. There were 15 sessions over the course of 6 weeks. During each session, the boys would walk once on the treadmill with the belt and once without it.

Developer Dr. Heakyung Kim says that they achieved even more than they hoped. At the end of the six-week training program, the boys demonstrated a completely different pattern of walking. Their strides were more normal in length and they were less flat-footed, all of which meant less frequent falls. One of the participants was able to give up his walker, needing only crutches.

Dr. Kim hopes that through this device, patients with Cerebral Palsy may gain an additional 20-30 years of walking ability.

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Solar-Powered Tents for the Homeless http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/07/24/solar-powered-tents-for-the-homeless/ http://finallygoodnews.net/2017/07/24/solar-powered-tents-for-the-homeless/#comments Mon, 24 Jul 2017 13:17:35 +0000 http://finallygoodnews.net/?p=2995 #wegetitdone: Girls from San Fernando Fight Back against Homelessness Daniela Orozco was moved by the dramatic increase in the number of homeless people in her city. She says that in her freshman year, she would pass perhaps one such individual on her daily walk to school. However, four years later, […]

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#wegetitdone: Girls from San Fernando Fight Back against Homelessness

Daniela Orozco was moved by the dramatic increase in the number of homeless people in her city. She says that in her freshman year, she would pass perhaps one such individual on her daily walk to school. However, four years later, she observed a significant increase in the homeless population, seeing them along the highways and under bridges where she lives just outside of Los Angeles.

Reacting Through Action

This painful reality galvanized Daniela and ten of her classmates to get involved. They wanted to do something meaningful for the homeless, but seeing as they did not come from wealthy families, their contribution had to be something other than money. The solution they came up with is not only useful, it is inspiring: A solar-powered tent that can fold up and fit into a backpack.

A Contribution Much Better Than Money

With no engineering experience, the girls relied upon Google, YouTube and other online sites to help them with the development of the tent. Chelly Chavez, one of the team members, learned to program from online resources in order to develop the programming language necessary to control the technical aspects of the tent. According to their teacher, there was also quite a bit of trial and error, all of which fed into the immense learning process that these girls engaged in.

Empowering Girls to be Engineers

The team won a $10,000 grant from the Lemelson-MIT program to help them develop this amazing invention that they hope will improve the lives of homeless people throughout the country. They worked under the wing of DIY Girls, an intervention program that seeks to bring more girls into the mathematics, sciences and engineering fields.

In mid-June, they presented their invention at the MIT Young Inventors Conference. So far, they have designed and built two prototypes, though there is only one solar tent that remains in tact, the first was practically destroyed during quality control. The second, however, is much sturdier. The girls are currently focused on getting the tents to mass production, which will be good news for the homeless who must deal with severe weather conditions throughout the year.


These Twelve Teen Girls Invented And Spend… by APlus

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