Apple Watch OS6 warns of hearing damage
Apple is doubling down on connected health applications, mostly through the Apple watch. A new feature found in WatchOS6 is a warning when the wearer is exposed to very loud noises — over 80 decibels, that have the potential to damage hearing. CNet
dis-rup-shun: Apple is leaning heavily into the connected fitness and wellness market. The company did the easier things first — connected fitness, and now is pioneering tools for connected wellness. In a rush to find new value propositions, Apple has invented loud noise warning technology and solving a problem that most consumers didn’t know they had. Most people understand that when a sound hurts their ears, it is likely unhealthy, but now they can measure exactly how unhealthy with the Apple watch. There are some major health issues, such as senior falls, and changes in eating and sleeping that seem to more urgently need a tech remedy than loud noise alerts, and let’s hope Apple addresses them soon.
Human robotics = computer guidance for humans
Dr. Pedro Lopez at the University of Chicago is developing a wearable device that uses electrical impulses to make your muscles move at precise times. This technology has the potential to train people to play a musical instrument, use sophisticated tools, and restore capabilities lost in an accident. CNBC
dis-rup-shun: Bridging the gap between humans and computers, Lopez’s invention is the beginning of augmented activity technology. Enabling a human to strap on a device that provides them the skills they don’t otherwise have is far easier, less expensive, and more likely than accomplishing the same through robotics. Perhaps we should call this technology “human robotics.”
Alexa Show helps visually impaired in the kitchen
Amazon’s latest device, the Alexa Show, is designed to sit on a counter top and provide answers, info and control. Now the device can help identify products such as canned food, assisting the visually impaired with everyday tasks. The user holds the device in front of the Show’s camera, and it audible informs them what they have. TechCrunch
dis-rup-shun: Alexa’s use cases are so many, they are staggering. Amazon is finding new applications weekly for the voice and camera technology which is well on its way to being the defacto home hub. Feel good applications like this one help to counteract consumer apprehension about Amazon employees listening in and now watching home activities.
Smart gloves enable fire fighters to move through smoke and dark
Haptic feedback built into gloves give wearers tactile feedback to tell them how close they are to a wall or barrier. Studio@Gizmodo
dis-rup-shun: Haptics in clothing can assist the blind, can help keep groggy drivers aware of a twist in the road, and can identify law enforcement of the approach of a wanted suspect. It will be a long time before most of us will be wearing smart clothing, but for people who perform specialized jobs, connected clothing will be coming in the next two years.