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Sci Fi Your Pi: Meditech an open source raspberry pi based Star Trek Tricorder
As promised on our previous post about the SciFi your Pi competition, here is one of the project selected for the challenge.
It is directly taken from Star Trek, do you remember the Tricorder, the all-in-one sensor used to analyze a new environment and people health status? Here it is, fully open source!
The latest update from the project owner:
At the actual date the first part of the project is closed: machines are assembled in the box, powered and the entire architecture has been set about 95% accordingly with the initial design. The only plus is the introduction of a fourth PI as the Cirrus audio board it is very difficult to match with any other hardware implementation on the same device so the PI hosting the Cirrus will only work in conjunction with the Bitscope module via the USB that is used in reverse mode. I mean as an acquisition and pre-processing probe instead of its traditional role of analog and logic analyser.
The key concepts grounding the project:
The key concepts of the Meditech project moves around the creation of a multifunctional measuring system for health and disease support, especially in cases where it is difficult an immediate intervention. Really the most fictional approximate representation of this concept is just the tricorder user by Dr Leonard McCoy to diagnose almost anything (of any species the Enterprise meets during his travels) See more here: Medical tricorder – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This inspiring idea has already moved a not indifferent number of average and big players but – as for as what I saw until now proposals and ideas are oriented in directions that are not so much aligned with my personal vision of what science and technology will be.
Anyway, keeping apart the philosophical considerations I see that there are very few things already developed in this direction and few of these are today products. The other aspect – investigating in this apparently poor of interest niche of the biomedical devices applications – is that it seems that possible features are limited to a very generic range of diagnostic devices: heart-rate, temperature, blood pressure and few more.
The core of Meditech is to make a dedicated small and integrated application able to acquire data from more sophisticated probes, to reach a more complete diagnostic system that can be applied in conditions where a traditional diagnosis is slower, extremely difficult and in many cases impossible to make in a reasonable time.
[As some parts for the project diagnostic probes are under evaluation, this part is subject to future modifications and updates]
The second essential feature of Meditech
While a portable diagnostic first-aid tool should be used, not rarely in extreme conditions e.g. accidents, earthquakes, wild areas, etc. it is almost difficult that the injured(s) can count on a perfectly prepared medical crew. Here we are thinking in totally different places than an hospital. So the ability to connect potentially with any Android device to manage data and exchange information real-time with a medical support located remotely can be a definitive solution: The on-site group can count on a remote support, exchange live data and be helped and guided to operate in the better possible conditions despite de objective difficulties inducted by hostile factors impossible to control.