The Future of Medical Technology: Holographic Data Input Will Change Everything

Data entry is one of the biggest aspects of the medical industry that no one thinks about. However, every piece of information that you provide, from your name and address, to your blood pressure and heart rate, needs to be recorded and filed away. While old school clinics still keep paper records, most of the forms you see filled out are also entered into a computer system in order to create digital copies as well. However, even healthcare professionals who consider themselves on the cutting edge of technology still use keyboards and tablets to input their patients’ data into their digital system.

In the future, though, it’s possible that we won’t need keyboards and tablet computers to input data. It’s even possible that we won’t need screens to view that data. We’ll just need a flat surface, and a tiny projector to show us everything we want to see.

Are Holograms The Way of The Future?

Holograms are by no means a new idea. Generally speaking, a hologram is when a projector scatters light so that it creates the illusion of a 3D object. And, according to The Medical Futurist, these holograms might be the way of the future when it comes to inputting the data that we need in our files.

How does a projected image allow you to input data, though?

Well, holographic keyboards already exist, and the technology is fairly simple. The projector puts an image of a keyboard on a flat surface (a wall, a table, etc.), and when you break the light beams it registers that the same way it would you pushing down a key on a traditional keyboard. This sends a signal to the computer (if the projector is attached to a machine like a traditional keyboard would be), and the keys you “press” show up on the screen.

That’s something we can do right now. In fact, holographic keyboards are something of a relatively cheap, niche item thought of as little more than a curiosity. But the potential they represent is huge when it comes to future possibilities. After all, the projectors take up practically no room, so they save a lot of space in often cramped environments. They don’t gather dust or germs like traditional keyboards, so keeping the area clean is a breeze. Best of all, these projectors are small enough they can travel in a pocket, and be set up nearly anywhere. This allows both the data entry side of the medical field, as well as healthcare professionals, to have the tools they need pretty much anywhere there’s a flat surface to use them on.

What Could Be Coming Next

While the application of holographic data entry tools is impressive, it does beg the question of what we might see in the future from using these constructions of light as technology improves, and projectors become smaller, and even more portable.

Imagine, for a moment, all of the devices that would no longer be necessary in your average clinic, or hospital. All of the keyboards just gone, replaced by tiny projectors that never have to resist the impact of someone’s fingers, and will last significantly longer. But why stop there? What if the screens we see could also be recreated as a projection? Even better, as a three-dimensional projection, allowing us to simply see floating directions, text documents, or even 3D video conferences like something straight out of a sci-fi novel or Marvel movie.

Holograms are already seeing increased use in the medical field. Projectors that can overlay an image of where someone’s veins are so that nurses don’t have to guess are becoming more commonly used for drawing blood, for instance. Projectors can be used to show the condition of broken bones, or other damage done to internal parts of a patient’s body, providing a 3D image of what’s happening, and the problem that doctors face. So it’s entirely possible that, as holograms and projectors become more common tools throughout the medical field, that they might replace everything from wall screens, to keyboards, to tablets; because they just can’t compete with an all-in-one projector.

Are you working on innovative medical technology? Get in touch with our product specialists to help you find the right solutions. Contact us today!

 

Kiosk & Self Service Technology – Increasing Popularity Means Increasing Sales

If you’ve been out shopping sometime in the past few years, you’ve no doubt noticed that self-service kiosks are becoming more and more popular in all kinds of stores. They’ve even debuted in the fast-food industry, allowing patrons at McDonald’s, Taco Bell, and others to place their orders without once needing to speak to someone at a register. While there have been varying opinions regarding this technology and its application, an important trend has emerged according to Forbes.

According to recent numbers, over 65 percent of people said they would be more likely to visit a restaurant if it offered a self-service kiosk for placing their order. Given that roughly a year ago the numbers indicated that 78 percent of people would be less likely to visit a restaurant that offered a kiosk, that’s a rather impressive turnaround.

Younger Demographics, and Screen Familiarity

One of the points recognized by Forbes is that the adoption of self-service kiosks in restaurants in particular, and in the retail industry in general, is that the younger generations of consumers are the ones who are taking up more room in the markets. Millennials and Gen Z grew up with technology in their hands, and generally speaking, they’re far more comfortable using a digital ordering space than Baby Boomers are; an advantage when one considers those younger consumers are becoming the bigger target demographic for companies the world over.

That generational shift can be thought of as the proverbial rock tossed into a pond; it was the point of impact, but the ripples of change are still spreading out from it. With these kiosks becoming more common, they’re also becoming more functional, and more affordable for smaller businesses to adopt. While they haven’t supplanted more traditional cashiers and check-out lanes, they are going through a similar transformation to what credit cards once did. Which is to say a new technology that was first only used by a small number of people, but which quickly grew to become the standard for how business is conducted.

Kiosks Make More Sales

While these kiosks make checkout faster and easier for customers in many cases (particularly those who don’t have the social energy to engage with a flesh-and-blood cashier at that particular moment), they also provide a sales advantage for businesses who use them according to Storis. These computerized stations can offer customers a full range of current coupons and deals, in addition to making last-minute add-on suggestions that a customer might not have thought about. The digital equivalent of, “Would you like fries with that?” A strategy that’s remained popular in retail because even if only one in every ten customers says yes, that’s a lot of additional fries sales by the end of the business day.

The other, major advantage of these self-service kiosks is that they take the pressure off of other sales associates. If there’s a long line, it’s possible for someone to just check themselves out. Or, alternatively, an associate can continue on with the task they were in the middle of (stocking, altering signing, clean up, etc.) instead of shifting to checking customers out at the register in stores where associates have to handle all the duties on their own. When you combine those advantages with the upswing in popularity these devices have experienced recently, it should come as absolutely no surprise that they’re cropping up all over the retail landscape.

For more information on the latest information about self-service kiosks, as well as the changes and latest technologies being integrated into these retail solutions, all you have to do is contact us today!

The Future of Self-Driving Smart RVs

For decades, people wondered what happened to the predicted reality of the futurists and cartoonists of our times. Asimov suggested we’d have robots at home by now and even people who adhere to the Jetsons are looking around for the signs of flying cars. While we did seem to get smartphones instead of cyber-augmentation or robots and electric hybrids instead of actual hovering, one has to admit that technology is once again moving forward at an impressive clip.

Solar panels are cheaper, more efficient, and easier to work with than ever, the smart home is starting to make controlling your house as easy as having a conversation, and self-driving cars are already seeing practical (if not completely successful) road tests. It’s only a matter of time before these three innovations come together to change our world and our roads more than anyone thought to see coming.  With AIs in cars and the advent of the tiny house craze… can self-driving smart RVs and the lifestyle they promise be far behind?

The Self-Driving Smart RV

To understand the future we’re predicting here, and you can bet it’s on the way, let’s just do a quick overview of the product that will be gracing our highways not that long in the future. Start with an RV, cozy, convenient, all the amenities of home as long as you stop at power and water hookups about once a day. Add an electric engine powered by a huge array of solar panels on that wide roof. Now you don’t need gas or a power hookup, you can drive as long as your water tank lasts.  Add self-driving. Now you can sleep while the RV takes you to your desired camping destinations. Add smart-home capabilities so the RV actively takes care of you, keeps track of you, and keeps you entertained if you’re all alone.

Oh, The Places You’ll (Automatically) Go

RV travel is already an incredibly appealing life for a large portion of the population. Many people spend every vacation driving and camping where they please and even more choose to retire to the comfortable, easy to maintain RV lifestyle. However, without the classic limitations like needing to stop and recharge or drive for hours across the country, imagine how many more people can take to the road, and where they’ll go! Families can go on vacation, spending quality time together on the drive with no risk that the children’s antics will distract the driver and cause problems. Elderly couples won’t have to worry about maintaining driving capabilities to vacation or visit grandchildren. All you have to do is set the RV to a destination and you can sleep or recreate while it drives.

The RV That Takes Care of You

Now let’s talk about the smart-home RV. Only considering features available today, you can program the lights and HVAC to be responsive, along with a comprehensive door and window security system, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and water tank monitoring to remind you when to make a stop. Then, with a custom-built vehicle, it would be simple to incorporate an oven and microwave that responded to the smart home hub, along with the entertainment center and possibly even a few self-watering plants. Finally, the spooky bit. Add a simple fitness monitor to the mix and give one to every occupant. Now the smart-RV knows if someone’s sick or injured and can drive itself to the nearest hospital. You can not only trust it to take care of your elderly parents, but they might also even get an insurance discount for living in one.

Considering the potential for comfort, convenience, freedom, and even very low expenses, many people with remote jobs, trust funds, retirement plans, and a pure wanderlust won’t be able to resist the draw of a solar-powered, self-driving smart-home RV. Could you?

If you’re on the front line of innovative automotive technology that will take us into the future, contact us.

Our team of specialists will help you find the right solutions for your project.

Telemedicine is Improving Prisoner Healthcare Quality

Providing sufficient healthcare in prisons has always been a special challenge for law enforcement and prison staff because running a prison involves a variety of overlapping responsibilities. On one hand, it’s important to make sure all prisoners remain healthy in terms of diet and exercise, treatment for illnesses, and addressing long-term medical conditions like diabetes or cancer. On the other hand, there is always a certain amount of risk involved in bringing providers to the facility. Many healthcare providers are uncomfortable working inside prisons because of this increased risk, making it a constant effort for prisons to keep healthcare visits scheduled regularly and increasing the expense of bringing doctors in.

Unfortunately, any hurdle involved in bringing doctors into the prisons can cause delays and gaps in healthcare. There are many times when a prisoner is sick or injured and a doctor simply is not available and won’t be around for another few days.

Prison Healthcare Has Been Ailing

All this has culminated into a terrible scarcity of available healthcare providers for prisons. It’s difficult for prisons to find doctors who are willing to do the job and often they wind up sharing, with doctors driving hours between locations to see a few dozen patients every couple of days. This is hard on the prisoners who can’t get the medical attention they need, hard on the few overworked doctors who are willing to work in prisons, and hard on prison budgets to afford those few helpful professionals. Fortunately, the recent tech trend of telemedicine is changing the way medical professionals can interact with prisons to create a much more complete healthcare plan for prisoners. Telemedicine reduces the necessity of in-person visits by making it possible for prisoners to have face-to-face consultations, checkups, and even have local procedures overseen by ranking doctors without the travel time and expense of in-person visits.

What is Telemedicine?

Diagnosis and treatment is something that cannot be done purely over the phone. Often, human language and our ability to communicate concepts simply aren’t efficient to convey medical truths like exactly what color a wound has turned or how much an injury has swollen. Remote consultations almost always result in the doctor deciding that they need to take a look at you after all. Because of this, prisons have been limited to providing periodic in-person treatment for centuries but the age of video chat has made it possible to do things differently with telemedicine. Doctors can now take a look at their patients, listen to their voices, and get qualitative diagnostic information without leaving their practice offices.

Live Video Checkups

Telemedicine is the ability to examine and converse with patients over a live video call. Because cameras, microphones, and internet reliability have all improved drastically in the last ten years, doctors can now provide the vast majority of their routine care duties remotely. With the help of on-site staff, they can even complete comprehensive examinations and assist in recommendations and treatments.

Rising Trend in Medicine

Telemedicine has become a popular rising trend as doctors and patients simultaneously realize that they can use advancing communication technology to achieve a large number of checkups quickly and efficiently across multiple prison facilities through remote appointments. Doctors can take a look at injuries, inspect swollen lymph nodes, and make definitive medical recommendations for the on-site staff to administer all through modern communication software that any modern teenager or business professional would recognize and understand.

Expansion of Technology

Some telemedicine practices are also already advancing to better tools for remote examination and methods for on-site and remote healthcare providers to collaborate. Healthcare equipment made to send wifi signals or mobile apps that interact with telemedicine platforms continue to move the cutting-edge of remote healthcare forward.

Providing Better Care for Prisoners

Most prisons don’t have a full-time doctor and instead hire one to make visits a few days out of each week, often sharing with other nearby prisons. There may be medically trained staff on-hand, but a prisoner who gets sick or injured will need to wait in the infirmary, sometimes for days, before a real doctor can see them and seeing a specialist is even more difficult to arrange. With telemedicine, both delay of treatment and unavailability of doctors is a much lower risk.

As telemedicine networks form, there may always be a few doctors on call in case of a remote emergency that could use expert examination and advice. Telemedicine essentially removes the logistical, safety, and travel concerns from traditional prison healthcare methods, particularly for regular check-ups and emergency response. Prisoners can now be seen by a doctor faster, receive treatment recommendations, and be on their way to recovery in the time it used to take to just get a doctor out to the location for an examination.

Prison Telemedicine From the Doctor’s Point of View

Of course, the prisoners aren’t the only ones benefiting from telemedicine. Because internet communication isn’t limited by distance, now a much larger pool of doctors are able to take prison physician roles, at least in a fully remote capacity. Local doctors who still make the necessary in-person visits can augment their trips with regular check-ins from the office. Those who live further away can help to provide more constant and on-demand care through remote consultation. Telemedicine may even open the doors to medical student volunteers helping with remote prison consultations for early career experience.

When the state takes responsibility for a prisoner, they also accept responsibility for any health problems that occur during their imprisonment. Telemedicine allows prisons to provide quality healthcare and regular checkups even though they have faced doctor shortage problems in the past. With zero personal risk or even drive time, more doctors will be able to contribute to prison health programs and patients will have greater access to the care that they need.

Telemedicine is already becoming increasingly popular both in prisons and throughout the healthcare industry. From checking in on elderly patients aging at home to vacation check-ups with the home doctor to emergency consultations with prisoners, telemedicine has a lot of promise for the healthcare communities.

For more insights into the current technological innovations in medicine and the future of medical technology, contact us today!

5 Ways Smart Home Features Can Improve Health Plan Patient Engagement

Two years ago, smart homes were a novelty gimmick, something that only the very technical and the very silly had installed in their homes. The features were limited, smart devices were barely connected, and the interactions were more fun than useful. But today, smart home hubs and personalities are running the show with more than 120 million active smart speakers in homes and offices across the nation.

Businesses of every stripe are jumping on the band-wagon for voice search, smart-home compatible apps, and custom smart home skills that allow consumers to access their services just by chatting with the friendly smart home personality who lives inside each speaker.

But the real innovations are what smart homes can do for the medical community and the many outpatient health plan members who can benefit from a voice-activated personal assistant. Smart homes have a tremendous amount of potential in the medical industry and we have only just begun to realize that potential. Join us today as we dive into five different ways that smart homes can be used to enhance the quality of care and plan engagement for your patients.

1) Smart Home Reminders on the Plan Schedule

The easiest and accessible way to use a smart home for medical purposes is the simple friendly reminder feature. Smart homes have a friendly, cheerful voice that never forgets an appointment or a scheduled medication. Once programmed to give daily reminders, a smart home will provide those reminders to patients in their home unfailingly. As long as the internet is active.

In fact, some smart homes can even forward these reminders to the phones of patients if they happen to be out of the house when that scheduled reminder comes around.

2) Calls and Voice Communication with Healthcare Providers

As the population moves away from phone calls, you would think that voice communication would be a short-lived trend, but you’d be wrong. There is a delightful novelty to speaking into the air and holding an ongoing phone conversation, and doctors are already benefitting from this when helping patients who don’t come in for checkups.

Through smart home phone and voice communication features, patients can call their healthcare providers without picking up the phone and doctors can ‘drop-in’ without needing to schedule a call or ask patients to have their phones on hand.

As you can imagine, this feature is even more important in the common medical situations when patients at home can’t reach the phone but may need a consultation, check-in, or to request emergency help all the same.

3) Voice-Searchable Health Plan Information

Voice search is when a smart home user asks their friendly home AI a question, and the AI pulls up the most convenient and seemingly relevant answer from the internet to recite back to them. Voice search is becoming increasingly popular as homeowners and patients discover that they can learn through conversation with their smart homes instead of having to comb through internet research and reading themselves.

Healthcare plan providers can take advantage of this new easy way to get information by making sure their patient help center answers and personal medical plan information is available to patients who are asking their smart home for answers when they should be asking a physician. This can be done by voice-search optimizing your web pages and by building a unique smart home skill designed to provide health plan answers in response to certain keywords in each spoken question.

4) Smart Devices That Coordinate the Health Plan

Smart devices, also known as devices on the Internet of Things (IoT) or wireless mobile-controllable devices have been becoming ever more prominent in the medical industry. From wearable devices to implanted devices to home medical machines, smart homes make it possible for both patients and healthcare providers to remotely communicate with these devices in order to improve a patient’s at-home health experience.

5) Interactive Smart Home Health Plan Skill

Finally, there are smart home skills. Skills are unique programs designed to expand the capabilities of a smart home AI to encompass more features, answers, and functions than the base program allows for. A commercial example includes the ability to order a pizza or control a new smart blender added to the home IoT collection. But in the medical field, custom smart home skills could be used to truly reach the patient-assisting potential of smart home technology.

It all depends on what your health plan organization can put together to provide new services and usable home features to health plan members with smart homes installed.

Want to learn more about improving your patient health with cutting-edge technology? Contact us today!

Modern Medical Technology is Bringing Lab Test Access to At-Home Patients

Modern medical technology has come further than almost any single professional has realized. There are constant innovations in almost every aspect of the medical field, from VR-simulated surgery to smart homes as in-home medical assistants. However, one of the most un-sung marvels of today’s medical innovations is the commercial accessibility of medical lab testing.

Anyone who has experienced a recent surgery or hospital-worthy medical condition is familiar with the battery of admittedly high-priced lab tests required to do anything with confidence. Blood tests, urine tests, biopsies, and ultrasound scans are only the beginning and all of them are a huge pain to send out your samples, get the results back, and then handle the mess of insurance-or-not payments afterward.

However, for the savvy consumer who knows how to search the internet, there is now a surprising battery of at-home tests allowing you to take your own samples and get results in a fraction of the time or cost.

Home Blood Testing Kits

Blood testing is one of the most common lab tests in the medical industry. A blood test can reveal an astounding amount about your health, your genetics, your biology, and what the rest of your life might theoretically look at. The human genome project inspired the world to wonder who their ancestors were, opening the door to what is now an approaching-complete battery of results you can get at home by taking your own blood and sending it to a private commercial lab for study.

Genome Mapping

Genome mapping is when the lab takes a look at your genetics and gives you a picture of your ancestral family tree. Thanks to the human genome project and the data continually gathered by both medical and commercial blood labs, these home test services are able to give the self-blood-takers a fascinatingly complete look at their continental and ethnic backgrounds.

Genetic Medical Predispositions

Another awesome thing that these commercial blood tests can tell eager clients is what medications and substances they should watch out for. It’s a well-known fact in the medical world that some people have a higher likelihood to react strongly or poorly to certain types of medication. With a home blood test, there’s no need for a three-inch folder of family medical history. Just a vial of your blood and a few weeks of waiting.

Blood Sugar Metabolism Discovery

Now what’s really interesting is what happens when commercial services branch away from traditional medical uses. One particular blood testing service includes a protein shake mix. Why? So that the clients can take their blood at three different points before, shortly after, and a few hours after drinking the shake to measure how the shake metabolizes into their blood. Discover the true pace and nutrient efficiency of your metabolism with a simple home blood test.

Home Urine Test Battery

The other battery of tests that you can do at home doesn’t even need to be sent to a lab to get results. No one’s surprised at the idea of a home urine test in terms of testing for pregnancy. But few realize that it’s possible to buy your own home drug tests and, now, even UTI (urinary tract infection) tests that give their results at home without the samples ever passing the hands of a medical professional.

Pregnancy Testing

Everyone knows that pregnancy tests are a home urine test that gives the results almost instantly without the need for a lab. Modern chemistry advancements have made the commercially available pregnancy tests both more accurate and able to give results far earlier than the tests that have been available for decades.

Drug Testing

Following in the footsteps of the home pregnancy test is the new ability to buy a standard battery drug test kit at the pharmacy and get your results at home. For anyone worried about their medication setting off a work drug test or previous wayward behavior lasting in their body and urine, now the answers are available within minutes.

UTI Testing

UTIs are urinary tract infections. They can happen for a wide variety of reasons, often from minor hygiene concerns and perfectly normal sexual activity. But it’s also a huge relief to know that that burning sensation is something the doctor can fix with a quick prescription as opposed to a disease that one might have for a lifetime. UTI testing is also highly useful for anyone with a medical condition making UTIs a common problem that should be dealt with promptly after detection.

 

Medical technology advancements aren’t limited solely to the hospital and futuristic care. Today, access to commercial labs and modern-day home chemistry are pulling back the curtain on understanding your own body without having to consult a doctor or go through the hospital rigmarole of taking and paying for hospital-style medical tests. For more awesome insights into medical technology and the future rolling out before us, contact us today!

Upfitting Your Fleet with Emergency and Liability Safety Technology

Fleet of transport trucks

Running a business fleet of vehicles is about more than just providing service or transportation. Each vehicle is an extension of the business and a conveyance for employees. The vehicle is at once responsible for employee safety and an asset that represents company responsibility. So it comes as no surprise that an increasing number of companies are upfitting their fleets not just with cool tech for convenience but also with emergency and liability safety technology.

What do we mean by that? Today, we’re talking about technology designed to both protect your employees from harm and protect the company and drivers from false liability claims if the vehicle is involved in an accident. Outside your company headquarters is a big world of possibilities, and not all of them are awesome. Upfitting your fleet with these five technologies can significantly increase driver safety and company safety should worst-case-scenarios occur.

 

1) Streaming Dash Cams, Front and Back

Dash cams have been around for over a decade but have recently risen to even greater usefulness. Now you have the ability to record, archive, and even internet-stream the footage collected from dash cams at both the front and rear of every company fleet vehicle.

This records what is going on around the vehicle at all times, acting simultaneously as a trip record and a security camera setup at the same time. If one of your drivers is involved in an accident, you can review the footage (potentially live-streamed to HQ) immediately to learn exactly what happened.

This can tell you if the fleet vehicle or the other involved drivers were at fault, what happened before and after the accident, and even collect evidence for police and insurance companies like the license plate of a hit-and-run vehicle. Not to mention, you can use any dash cam footage to create training videos for new drivers.

 

2) Safe Driving Guidance Cameras

Guidance cameras are a feature usually only seen on very high-end vehicles but just because your fleet didn’t come with them installed doesn’t mean you can’t have them. By installing very small cameras at the corners of each bumper, you can make it possible for your drivers to always see a few feet out from their vehicle. They can better see curbs, approaching vehicles, and other details through a simulated top-view, giving a safe-driving and safe-parking perspective that few non-luxury drivers get to experience.

This can act to protect both the vehicle and your drivers as an extra point of perspective and visual safety.

 

3) Onboard Dispatch Direct Assistance

We love the idea of car insurance and roadside assistance companies that can ‘phone’ directly into the car with hands-free communication if a problem is detected. But you don’t have to have On-Star or similar services to provide the same kind of cool integrated support for your fleets. With today’s wireless technology, you can hook Dispatch directly into built-in car speakers any time something alarming is detected through your GPS tracking, OBD sensor, or just if drivers hit an available button or speak a specific “wake word” to call dispatch.

This way, you don’t have to rely on phones that may or may not be charged to immediately open a support call between your fleet vehicles and dispatch. This can be particularly useful during difficult driving situations and in the event of an emergency.

 

4) Authorized Employee Driver Detection

If you have ever worried that non-authorized employees or even non-employees will get behind the wheel, there’s technology for that, too. There are, actually, many different ways to upfit your fleet vehicles to detect if the driver is an authorized driving employee. You might use RFID detection to sense an employee badge or wristband. You might use biometric data like fingerprints, eye scans, or voice recognition. Or an automated system might ask for a specific passcode or even a quiz question that only an authorized driver would know the answer to.

We advise that you do not disable a vehicle without an authorized driver, in case the vehicle needs to be moved by a non-driver in an emergency. But a non-authorized driver should absolutely trigger a call-through from dispatch and live GPS tracking.

 

5) Self-Generating Route Records

Finally, with very little upfitting at all, you can set up your vehicles to create automatic records of the routes they have taken. Using GPS geofencing, and/or navigation systems you can create simple or detailed logs of company vehicle whereabouts. These logs will not be employee-editable because they will be based only on the physical locations of the vehicle at set times or when destinations were reached. In case the location of each vehicle ever comes into question, these records will be incredibly useful to show both where vehicles were point-to-point and the routes they took along with exact times.

You can use this data to analyze route efficiency and on-time customer care. And, should it ever come up, law enforcement can make use of this data to confirm that your vehicles were on route and occupied during any times in question.

Upfitting your business fleet with clever technological upgrades isn’t just for efficiency and coolness factor, it can also keep your teams safe from physical and legal dangers as well. Working on a new design for upfitting your fleet? Contact us today to speak to one of our specialists about vehicle upfitting and where the future is taking business technology!

The Future of Medical Technology: Diagnostics in Real Time

We’ve all seen images of the possible future where a medical diagnosis can be given with the simple press of a button in seconds. No matter what condition someone is suffering from, all it takes is pointing a handheld device at them, taking a quick scan, and then looking at the readout to know, conclusively, what is wrong. Anyone who’s ever found themselves at a hospital knows that process would be a dream compared to the constant testing, re-testing, level checking, blood draws, and dozens of other procedures that medical professionals have to go through today. Especially when you consider that the results after all of that rigmarole might still be a shrug of the shoulders and a, “We don’t know.”

There is one particular analytical tool that we have access to that can make surgeons look positively clairvoyant, though. It’s called the intelligent surgical knife, according to The Medical Futurist, and it represents a potential jumping off point for a whole new kind of medical technology.

How Does This Knife Work?

On the surface, the intelligent surgical knife just looks like a new twist on a very old idea. An electrical current runs through the knife, heating up the tissue, and making it easier to deliver incisions. In a way, it makes it like putting a hot knife through butter. That concept has been around for a while, but it’s the additional components of the knife that make it unique.

When the current from the knife cuts, it of course vaporizes some tissue. The idea was that it would minimize blood loss when this technology was first introduced. However, the intelligent surgical knife has sensors on it that will analyze the vaporized tissue, running the sample through a mass spectrometer. This allows it to decipher what is in a patient’s body in real-time, and to give that information to the surgeon in seconds so they can proceed accordingly.

In other words, this knife could help surgeons find out in moments if a growth is benign, or malignant, thus allowing them to make proper adjustments during a surgical procedure.

Knowledge is Power

The idea behind this knife, and other, similar advancements, is to make sure that medical professionals can get as much definitive information about what’s going on in our bodies as possible, and to do it as quickly as technology allows. Sometimes this means developing smaller, portable versions of existing technology (a mass spectrometer that can interact with something the size of a large scalpel), and other times it means developing entirely new ways of seeing the body, and what’s happening inside it.

What form those future designs will take depends a great deal on the discoveries we make, and the forms our technology takes.

For example, Google has already developed contact lenses that can detect glucose levels in the body, alerting diabetics when they dip below a safe level. Wearable devices can gather information about our activity levels, our heart rates, and even how well we sleep, allowing doctors to get access to all our information from a remote location in real-time. Methods are getting more nuanced, and less invasive, practically every day, and the toolbox that medical professionals have access to is only going to get deeper, and broader as more technological solutions are added to it.

So while we probably won’t be able to point a smartphone-sized device at someone and be able to get their full diagnosis in the next few years, we are definitely taking steps to get ourselves there. For more information on the latest developments in technology, and how that is going to affect your life, simply contact us today!

5 Ways to Integrate Mobile Devices and Mounts in Your Vehicle

5 ways to mount mobile devices

In the modern era, devices and driving go hand-in-hand. Just as long as no hands are actually on devices. Today’s smart-capable devices can give us audio directions down a programmed navigation route. Devices can make hands-free calls, play media via voice command, and they are even now gaining the ability to read answers to questions off the internet or recite e-books from the text-file in a soothing AI voice.

Needless to say, today’s mobile devices and smart-home technology are revolutionizing the way we drive with much of the potential yet unrealized. But what we have realized for sure is that we want our phones, tablets, and smart home features with us in the car. 

Some businesses and individuals are content with the computers built into the dash of the nicest and most recent models. And it’s true, these dash computers are getting pretty impressive. But for older vehicles that need to be upfitted, custom device integration, and everyday versatility there are also many ways to mount mobile devices in one’s vehicle instead.

Which is exactly what we’re here to talk about today: The five leading ways to integrate mobile devices mounted in today’s vehicles.

 

1) Integral Dashboard Device

By far the most convenient way to enjoy all the features of a smartphone in your car is simply to buy a vehicle that has an integral dashboard device. Or upfit an older model’s stereo to be replaced and fitted for a now-integral tablet instead.

The integral dashboard device has become incredibly popular, especially for the navigation and soundsystem features. But also for the ability to chat with Alexa on the road and get cool answers to roadtrip trivia.

The only downside to the integral dashboard device is that many drivers find themselves glancing down and to the right more often than they would otherwise.

 

2) Dashboard Mounted Phone Clip Holster

For many fleets, one of the major benefits of upfitting is making it possible for professionals to use their own phones or company phones as their onboard computer while on the road. Simply mount your cellphone to a clip on the dash, make sure it’s charging, and enjoy the convenience of a phone in hands-free mode when driving.

The dashboard-mounted phone clip idea usually involves adhesive on the back of the clip mount to hold the phone conveniently in place. Placed very carefully, it can become possible to put your mini-map within your peripheral vision of the road instead of having to constantly glance down to see your interface. Clips often work with any similarly sized phone as well and hold them securely.

 

3) Dashboard Mounted Pivot Magnet

An even greater improvement on the dashboard clip is a very strong magnet on a pivot-point which is anchored with adhesive to the dashboard. When combined with a simple ferrous plate adhesed to the back of a phone’s protective case, the phone will sit firmly on the magnet wherever the swivel magnet is placed and even change directions when, for example, the sun is setting and reflecting right off that phone screen.

The pivot magnet is incredibly versatile and can be helpful for anything from that peripheral mini-map to mounting extra devices for the passenger.

 

4) Sunshade Mounted Radio or Smart Speaker Mount

In a long-standing tradition of truckers and field services, we’d be remiss to forget that devices can also be mounted above one’s head at about the level of the pivoting base of the sun-shade. This is not the ideal location for a screen, but it has always been a great place for radios. And now that there are smart homes and mobile hotspots, you can absolutely anchor a smart speaker mount in the same convenient sunshade spot.

 

5) Center Steering Wheel Mounted Device Holster

Your final option is an interesting one that is often under-explored, the ability to mount a phone on top of the center of the steering wheel A mount here can put your mini-map in close view without taking up dash space and it will not interfere with your ability to rapidly turn the vehicle using the ascribed hand-over-hand technique.

Are you thinking about upfitting your vehicles to the latest in mobile device and smart home technology? We can help! Contact us today to find out more about phone mounts, integral tablets, and of course how you will keep them all charged.

4 Technology Upgrades Every Business Fleet Should Have

A shipping fleet lined up

Modern business fleet management is so much more than taking calls and sitting in an office with a giant map of the city. What was once a dispatch job dispensing intermittent instructions to drivers all over the city is now a highly streamlined technical experience involving adaptive scheduling, navigation, communication, and even vehicle controls. Or, at least, it should be.

The surprising thing is that even with technology for fleet management and service improvement having come leaps and bounds, many business fleets are still mostly just drivers, cars, and the occasional cellphone call back to HQ. However, if your fleet is ready to step into the digital, mobile era of seamless cloud-based management on every possible level, you can. All it takes is putting together your new vehicle tech stack and adapting your workflow to the newly unveiled fleet management possibilities.

Today, we’re starting with the basics before leading you through a thought-leadership journey into the future of cutting-edge fleet management. For this article, we’re going to focus only on four technology upgrades that every business fleet can and should have:

 

GPS Tracking and Geofencing

GPS has been a fleet management option since the 90s and has only been getting more accurate and accessible since that time. It is entirely possible not just for your drivers to navigate with on-point GPS, but for fleet managers to be able to track the exact location of every single vehicle in their fleet. Of course, you want to know where your company vehicles are, and for more than just basic oversight and security reasons.

Being able to track the locations, routes, movements, and even average speed of your drivers can open up your process to streamlining through data-driven insights.

 

Geofencing

Geofencing is a technology that stacks onto GPS tracking, as it defines the areas where your GPS-marked vehicles should and should not go. Not only can you track how efficiently your drivers are handling their routes, but you will also be immediately alerted if a company vehicle strays too far from it’s approved service zone in the event of a stolen vehicle, a rogue driver, or traffic so bad it’s time to start calling clients.

 

Remote-Controlled Vehicle Security

OnStar pioneered the idea of providing vehicle security remotely from a distant call center when a vehicle’s alarm goes off, or the driver requests help. But with modern vehicle technology, it is becoming possible to skip the commercial-grade services to handle your remote-controlled security features. Whether you need to help a driver find where they parked or slow down a vehicle that has been stolen for a high-speed police chase, of course, you want this power over your vehicles.

It is now possible to not only provide traditional security features, but to take more sophisticated control like kicking on the AC to keep internal equipment alive when the temperature rises too high, take control of the radio to send messages to an unresponsive driver, or even look through the vehicle’s installed dash and rear cameras to provide nearly on-site assistance.

 

Interactive Mapping and Routing Software

No doubt, your vehicles already have a built-in navigation screen or a mounting point for mobile navigation devices. But navigation software for business fleets is so much more innovative than simple Google Maps for consumers. Don’t get us wrong; Google Maps is terrific, and software powered by their traffic-aware API is even better.

What your fleet needs is not just the fastest route, but the smartest route. Which sometimes means taking over human control and loading a new route in for your teams manually from headquarters. Interactive mapping and routing software communicating through the cloud can make it possible to help your team navigate bad traffic, re-strategize a multi-client service route, or adjust to an updated driving schedule instantly without the passenger having to fumble with the pin-points and route settings.

Is your fleet as upgraded and innovatively managed as it can be with the technology available to your business today? If you’re ready to take the next step toward truly cutting-edge business fleet technology, contact us today!