The robotic boy that breathes and bleeds: Researchers reveal 'hyper-real' medical doll

Daily Mail

Medical students are using a robot boy to better understand how young patients respond to treatment. Called HAL, the realistic robot can cry, bleed, talk and go into anaphylactic shock.

Fusion: A Collaborative Robotic Telepresence Parasite That Lives on Your Back

IEEE Spectrum Robotics Channel

Most of the telepresence robots that you can buy are appealing because they offer you some sort of mobile agency--like, the ability to remotely drive yourself around. Robots like these are great if you want to, say, find yourself an elephant, but not all that great if you want to help other people out through collaborative tasks that require physical interaction. Collaboration, especially instruction, often depends on the physical act of one person showing another person how to do something, and even if your telepresence robot has an arm or two, it may not be at all intuitive for a remote user have effective direct interactions. At Keio University in Japan, roboticists have developed a new kind of telepresence robot that's designed to (as literally as possible) allow you to remotely inhabit the body of someone else in order to assist them with manipulation tasks. The Keio researchers call their system Fusion, and it lives on someone's back, allowing you to peak over their shoulder and use a second pair of arms to either show them how tasks are done, or even to physically move their limbs for them.

How drones are being used in the fight against malaria

The Independent

The drone makes a conspicuous racket as it lifts off on a mission to capture images of the reservoir below. The sight and sound of this strange device stirs interest among locals as they make their way to and from the town of Kasungu in central Malawi. It takes a matter of minutes for a small crowd to form. A few yards away, Patrick Kalonde is wading through grass and mud. Patrick, an intern at Unicef working on humanitarian uses of drones, is carrying a plastic container and a ladle and is looking for mosquito larvae. The contrast between high-tech drones and low-tech "bucket-and-spade" science, metres apart, could not be starker โ€“ yet both are equally important to the success of our new project to map where mosquitoes breed. Kasungu, a small town at the base of the picturesque Kasungu Mountain, is the centre of Africa's first humanitarian drone testing corridor. Set up by Unicef in 2017 with support from the Malawi government, the corridor is an 80km-wide area for flying and testing drones to help the local people. Keen to dispel the reputation that drones are only useful for destruction, the Unicef corridor promotes "drones for good".

Drone Tests in Reno Focus on Emergency Medical Supplies

U.S. News

Flirtey drones already have delivered automated external defibrillators used to jumpstart the hearts of cardiac arrest victims as part of a joint emergency program with first-responders in Reno. The company also anticipates future deliveries of EpiPens for severe allergic reactions and Narcan for opioid overdoses.

AI detects patterns of gut microbes for cholera risk: A hundred kinds of microbes out of 4,000 determine susceptibility to cholera


"These are patterns that even the most sophisticated scientist couldn't detect by eye," said Lawrence A. David, Ph.D., a senior author of the study and assistant professor of molecular genetics and microbiology at Duke School of Medicine. "While some people are warning about artificial intelligence leading to killer robots, we are showing the positive impact of AI in its potential to overcome disease." The research, published this week in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, suggests that a focus on gut microbes may be important for developing improved vaccines and preventive approaches for cholera and other infectious diseases. "Our study found that this'predictive microbiota' is as good at predicting who gets ill with cholera as the clinical risk factors that we've known about for decades," said Regina C. LaRocque, M.D., MPH, of the Massachusetts General Hospital Division of Infectious Diseases, a senior author of the study and assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. "We've essentially identified a whole new component of cholera risk that we did not know about before."

Self-driving Uber death should halt tech's race to the bottom

New Scientist

Around the world, vehicles kill more people than HIV/AIDS โ€“ about 1.3 million each year. In the vast majority of cases, it is the inattentive and error-prone humans operating those cars and lorries who are at fault. Pedestrian Elaine Herzberg died after being struck by an autonomous Uber car on Sunday as she crossed a road โ€“ the first time that a self-driving vehicle has claimed the life of another road user.

Public schools enlist germ-zapping robots in classrooms

Daily Mail

A robot is zapping classroom surfaces at public schools in Oklahoma to make them germ-free, as a vicious flu season draws to a close.

AI-powered robot finds common soap ingredient may combat malaria


Around half of the world's population is at risk of contracting malaria and it causes around half a million deaths each year. However, the parasites that cause malaria are becoming more resistant to the drugs we currently use to combat them, meaning the global malaria risk stands to increase if we don't develop new drugs quickly enough. Well new research published recently in Scientific Reports finds that a common chemical used in everything from soap and toothpaste to clothing and furniture might be an effective treatment, and it was done with the help of AI.