health & medicine


AI Hospital Software Knows Who's Going to Fall

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El Camino Hospital, located in the heart of Silicon Valley, has a problem. Its nurses, tending to patients amid a chorus of machines, monitors, and devices, are only human. One missed signal from, say, a call light--the bedside button patients press when they need help--could set in motion a chain of actions that end in a fall. "As fast as we all run to these bed alarms, sometimes we can't get there in time," says Cheryl Reinking, chief nursing officer at El Camino. Falls are dangerous and costly.


The human prefrontal cortex is special

Science

The size and surface area of the cerebral cortex varies dramatically across mammals. It is well known that the human cortex is by far the largest among primates. However, there is no agreement about whether the human prefrontal cortex is larger, in relative terms, than those of other primates. Donahue et al. compared structural brain scan datasets from humans, chimpanzees, and macaques. They found a greater proportion of prefrontal cortex gray matter volume in humans than in the two nonhuman primate species, and they observed an even greater difference between species for white matter volume in the prefrontal cortex.


This tech company used AI to give a radio host his voice back after it was robbed by a rare medical disorder

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A tech company based in Scotland has built a new voice for US journalist Jamie Dupree, who lost the ability to speak due to a rare neurological condition. Dupree is a Washington-based political journalist and radio host for local broadcaster WSB Atlanta. He began to lose his voice in 2016 and was diagnosed with tongue protrusion dystonia, a neurological condition which causes people to lose control over their tongues, making speech almost impossible. While Dupree continued to work as a journalist, losing his voice meant he had to come off the air. After a two-year absence, he will be back broadcasting this month with a new AI-generated voice on WSB Atlanta and other Cox Media-owned stations in Orlando, Jacksonville, Dayton, and Tulsa.


Brain scan algorithm is 1,000 times faster

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MIT has published details of "VoxelMorph", a new machine-learning algorithm, which is over 1,000 times faster at registering brain scans and other 3-D images. Medical image registration is a common technique that involves overlaying two images – such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans – to compare and analyse anatomical differences in great detail. If a patient has a brain tumour, for instance, doctors can overlap a brain scan from several months ago onto a more recent scan to analyse small changes in the tumour's progress. In a pair of upcoming conference papers, however, researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) describe how to overcome this problem. Their new machine-learning algorithm can register brain scans and other 3-D images over 1,000 times more quickly.


Meet the menagerie of parasites that can live in human eyes

Popular Science

When Abby Beckley started work on a salmon fishing boat in Alaska, worms were not high on her list of concerns. But it wasn't long before the 26-year-old woman became aware of something irritating her left eye. After several days, she finally went digging with her fingers… and plucked out a tiny worm. "I was just pulling them out, so I knew there were a lot," Beckley recently told National Geographic. Mystified, Beckley's doctors sent a sample of the errant worms to the state health department, who forwarded it to Richard Bradbury, a parasitologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Parasitic Diseases Reference Laboratory, which identifies thousands of parasites every year that are too rare for doctors to recognize.


Maze-running artificial intelligence program learns to take shortcuts

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Call it an a-MAZE-ing development: A U.K.-based team of researchers has developed an artificial intelligence program that can learn to take shortcuts through a labyrinth to reach its goal. In the process, the program developed structures akin to those in the human brain. The emergence of these computational "grid cells," described in the journal Nature, could help scientists design better navigational software for future robots and even offer a new window through which to probe the mysteries of the mammalian brain. In recent years, AI researchers have developed and fine-tuned deep-learning networks -- layered programs that can come up with novel solutions to achieve their assigned goal. For example, a deep-learning network can be told which face to identify in a series of different photos, and through several rounds of training, can tune its algorithms until it spots the right face virtually every time.


Sleep researcher explains the science behind late-night ghost, demon and alien sightings

Daily Mail

While it's easy to attribute these spooky sounds to the supernatural, researchers now believe sleep could be the cause of late-night ghostly sightings. In an article for the Conversation, Professor of Psychology at Goldsmiths University, Alice Gregory set about to determine how anxiety, REM sleep, and'exploding head syndrome' could offer a scientific explanation for late-night paranormal occurrences. It is during the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage of sleep when you are most likely to have vivid dreams. At this stage your body is also paralysed, perhaps as a safety mechanism to stop us acting out our dreams so that we don't end up attempting to fly (Stock Image) If you believe in the paranormal you might not be surprised if you hear stories of deceased loved ones appearing during the night, huge explosions heard just as someone is drifting off with no obvious cause, and other peculiar occurrences. My interest in the paranormal started with an impromptu coffee with a colleague, Chris French, who researches reports of paranormal experiences.


How Will Consumers Make Sense Of Wearable Technology?

Forbes Technology

Wearable technology has become a buzzword among marketers, consumers and well-being gurus. Forbes projects that the wearables market will grow to $34 billion by 2020. But what exactly is wearable technology? The devices now flooding the market offer varied functionality – from activity tracking to mobile connectivity to medical monitoring. The Fitbit tracker, Apple smartwatch, Tambour Horizon smartwatch by Louis Vuitton and Sano's glucose monitoring patch are all, technically, wearable technology.


Microsoft's AI Initiative for People with Disabilities By CIOREVEIW TEAM

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At the developer's conference of Microsoft, the CEO of the company Satya Nadella announced a five year'Artificial Intelligence for Accessibility' project of $25 million to utilize the full potential of AI for the betterment of the lives of people with disabilities. The project is for the researchers, the NGOs, and developers. During the conference, Satya Nadella said, "It is important for us to help more people and it's been a passion of mine to help people suffering from disabilities like amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and autism. The AI for accessibility will provide technologies and platform for the developers to use AI solutions to help billions of people". Across the world, 1 out of 10 people with the disabilities has access to assistive technologies.


The AI That Spots a Stopped Heart

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A woman in Copenhagen hears a loud crash in the next room and rushes in to discover her father sprawled on the floor, unresponsive. She quickly calls Denmark's health-emergency hotline, where a person answers the phone--but a computer is eavesdropping. As the operator runs through a series of questions--the patient's age, physical condition, what he was doing when he fell--the computer quickly determines the man's heart has stopped and issues an alert. "This software can help them save lives." Corti's AI employs machine learning to analyze the words a caller uses to describe an incident, the tone of voice, and background noises on the line.