Archive for the ‘Sensors and Actuators’ Category

Mimo | Helping Parents Rest Better

September 6th, 2013 by NearInteraction

There appear to be very few limits where the “quantified self” movement can go, especially if this piece of baby monitoring equipment designed to give parents peace of mind is anything to go by.

Mimo is a connected onesie that monitors a baby’s sleep and feeds the information back to parents using an integrated smartphone app.

For some it may seem like technology gone too far, but it could address the very real problem of 4,000 infants who die suddenly every year in the US, often with no obvious cause. Many of these deaths occur during sleep, so Mimo alleviates any fears parents might have by letting them know everything is alright, and setting off an alarm when things are not.

Available on a crowdfunding site this Thursday, the kit will cost $200. It comes with three organic cotton onesies that act as respiration sensors, a toy turtle clip that monitors movement, and a Wi-Fi base station shaped like a lily pad – fully equipped with a microphone.

The app that goes along with the equipment is available for Android and iPhone, collecting important information displaying events such as how many times your baby has rolled over in the night, longest nap, and other changes over time.

The company that made the device also had to deal with concerns over choking hazards, and making sure their wearable technology is still appealing to mothers, making them confident enough to put their infants in such a device.

Mimo


Bluetooth ‘Tile’ allows you to find lost keys, bikes, dogs, anything really

August 3rd, 2013 by NearInteraction

Bluetooth 'Tile' allows you to find lost keys, bikes, dogs, anything really - Jason O'Grady

Tile (@TheTileApp) is an absolutely brilliant hardware device that can be attached to keys (or just about anything) so that you can locate them when lost. Tiles measures 36mm x 36mm x 4.2mm (or about the size of a matchbook), uses Bluetooth 4.0 (low energy) and will be compatible with iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPad Mini, iPad 3rd and 4th generation, and iPod Touch 5th generation. (Sorry Android users).

Bluetooth 4.0 is a brilliant choice because the built-in battery lasts about a year and doesn’t require recharging. While GPS would be ideal, it suffers from heavy battery consumption (less than a day, typically) and WiFi requires open hotspot access.

The Tile iOS app (not yet available) allows your to find a Tile by telling you how close you are to it. You can see yourself getting closer and further away from the Tile when within a 50 – 150ft range via the iOS app. The app logs the last location it saw your Tile (via GPS) giving you a good starting point. Tile also includes a built-in speaker, so you can make it emit a tone when you’re getting close.

But it’s the Tile service that makes it compelling. It uses a crowd-sourced model so that you still have a good chance of finding your Tile (when it’s attached to a dog or your MacBook, for example) even when it travels out of its 150-foot (Bluetooth) range. It’s like having the world help you locate your lost item. You can track a Tile by seeing when it’s identified by other Tile users.

Obviously the service requires a large user base to be effective (and may not work in less populated areas) but it’s a no brainer in large metros. And something tells me that the service will gain critical mass quickly.

Even though you’re helping find other people’s Tiles with your iPhone, the company insists that it takes your security seriously. Other Tile users cannot search for your Tiles (or your iPhone) for example and only you and the Tile users you’ve explicitly shared your Tiles with can search for your Tiles.

A single Tile can be pre-ordered for $19 and quantities of four or higher cost around $14 each and will ship in “winter 2013/14″ according to the developers (SRP will be $25 post launch). I pre-ordered eight (there’s a limit of 10 Tiles per account) so that I can attach them to all of my devices and maybe a few non-gadgets as well.

How much would you pay to find your keys in a crunch? What about your MacBook?YouTube Preview Image

Source: zdnet


RFID Ring Swipes Just Like A Subway Card

June 11th, 2013 by NearInteraction

“MIT graduate Chris Benson, along with co-founders from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUDT) have come up with a solution to the problem of digging through your bag for a transport card.

The “Sesame Ring” is a 3D-printed piece of wearable technology embedded with an RFID chip that makes it easy to access MBTA train stations. Initially, the trio tried key chains, bracelets, and iPhone cases, but decided that rings were the best solution.

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After testing the idea with incoming freshman at SUDT, replacing student IDs with the rings, the trio move on to bigger things.

They set up the company Ring Theory as a platform for the idea, and have since launched a Kickstarter campaign as well.

For a pledge of $20, you can be the proud owner of a more convenient way to get through train station barriers. Once you have pledged, all you have to do is choose from one of seven different colors, whether you want a gold or silver ring face, and tell the company your ring size.

ring-theory-mbta-rfid-pass

There is also the option to add a four-letter insignia, or your own custom design for those looking to make a fashion statement.

Benson is confident the idea can be applied in offices, university campuses, and other places where identification is required, such as a bicycle rental systems. He also hopes to combine multiple identifications into one ring at some point, meaning one piece of wearable tech could replace an entire wallet at some point.”

Source: PSFK

Ring Theory


Thermometer Delivers Diagnosis & Calls The Doctor

March 6th, 2013 by NearInteraction

“Thermometer is one of the oldest medical device, used by every doctors and even in house as a personal medical device.

The Kinsa Smart Thermometer gets you a new way of diagnosing and dealing with normal and everyday illness.

The Kinsa Smart Thermometer is designed in a simple way to provide treatment advice when it comes to more serious symptoms.
If you really feel your condition is extremely serious, Kinsa App can even make a call to your doctor or may be book an appointment at your local medical clinic.

The device have no battery, display or processor in it. You just need to plug it into iPhone headphone jack and Kinsa App will display the patients temperature.

It’s a good device, if like to monitor your health closely as it can record your temperature historically by creating a profile.

It can also be helpful to check for any seasonal illness circulating in local groups.”

The Kinsa Smart Thermometer: thin, elegant, and comfortable.

Connects to your phone for accurate and fast reading. Accompanying app is free with an easy-to-use interface. Includes optional extension cord.

Kinsa Smart Thermometer



BFS-Solo: High Speed Book Digitization using Monocular Video

February 4th, 2013 by NearInteraction

BFS-Solo enables high-speed book digitization using monocular video captured while the paper is deformed. Our original method can reconstruct the 3D deformation and restore a flat document image by taking into account the physical constraints on deformation for a sheet of paper from the monocular image sequence. This system allows flexibility of configuration for high-speed book digitization, anywhere and anytime.”

Ishikawa Oku Laboratory

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Interactive Educational Tool for Kids Learning Stop-Motion Animation

January 7th, 2013 by NearInteraction

“Pas a Pas is an interactive educational tool for schools that enables children to learn and experiment with different sets of elements using animation. It aims to use the physicality and the animated outcome of stop motion animation to bridge the gap between abstract concepts from maths, physics or arts (usually represented by graphs, equations or words) and reality.

The system consist of three aspects: a platform to record and display animations, sets of elements for animating and a community to share the content generated.”

Pas a Pas


Baby Monitor Let You Watch Over Your Baby by Your Iphone

November 5th, 2012 by NearInteraction

“This Smart Baby Monitor from Withings is now available in the U.S., allowing parents to remotely check on their child using their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. The hinged monitor has a wide-angle adjustable 3-megapixel camera, with night vision and a 4x zoom.

The device also has sensors that detect noise, movement, temperature and humidity levels, and can alert the parent of these changes, depending on the user-adjustable parameters. A two-way microphone lets you hear the baby and also talk to them, and you can also start a lullaby or switch on a night light.

The Smart Baby Monitor can connect to the internet via wi-fi or Ethernet cable, or directly to your Apple device via Bluetooth. You need to be running Withings’ freeWithBaby app on your device to access the monitor’s functions.”

Check out the demo video below:

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Physical Objects and Desk Space Shared Online With a Projector Lamp

September 3rd, 2012 by NearInteraction

“Seen at Microsoft Research’s TechFest 2012, IllumiShare enables remote people to share any physical or digital object on any surface. It is a low-cost, peripheral device that looks like a desk lamp, and just like a lamp lights up a surface at which it is pointed, IllumiShare shares a surface. To do this, IllumiShare uses a camera-projector pair where the camera captures video of the local workspace and sends it to the remote space and the projector projects video of the remote workspace onto the local space. With IllumiShare, people can sketch together using real ink and paper, remote meeting attendees can interact with conference room whiteboards, and children can have remote play dates in which they play with real toys.”

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Noisy Jelly

June 4th, 2012 by NearInteraction

“Noisy jelly is a game where the player has to cook and shape his own musical material, based on coloured jelly.

With this noisy chemistry lab, the gamer will create his own jelly with water and a few grams of agar agar powder. After added different color, the mix is then pour in the molds. 10 min later, the jelly shape can then be placed on the game board,and by touching the shape, the gamer will activate different sounds.

Technically, the game board is a capacitive sensor, and the variations of the shape and their salt concentration, the distance and the strength of the finger contact are detected and transform into an audio signal.
This object aims to demonstrate that electronic can have a new aesthetic, and be envisaged as a malleable material, which has to be manipulated and experimented.”

Raphaël Pluvinage


Fine Collection of Curious Sound Objects

April 2nd, 2012 by NearInteraction

“The arrangement includes six exceptional exhibits from the world of sounds and acoustics. At first sight looking trivial, each object incorporates a very unique ability.

The magical character of each object is accompanied with a little story, almost completely concealing the existence of technical components such as speakers or sensors. Only small connection ports as well as the uniform black finishing point to their unusual abilities.

Processing is used for recording live audio input, modifying the playback and generating digital sound according to sensor data.

In form and functionality all these exhibits pursue John Maeda’s „Simplicity“. They are enjoying to use, they are surprising and one wants to explore and investigate them.”

Georg Reil