Future Tech: Plus…smart denim jackets & a fake whisky detector.
Artificial Intelligence could be used to spot Alzheimer’s disease a decade before symptoms occur
Various researchers around the globe are developing ways to detect Alzheimer’s as early as possible. After all, early detection gives people the power to seek treatment that can slow down the condition’s effects, as well as enough time to get their legal and financial affairs in order. Some decided to focus on blood and cerebrospinal fluid tests, while others are developing gadgets that can look for early signs.
A team of researchers from the University of Bari in Italy, however, believe the answer lies in artificial intelligence. They developed an algorithm that can spot tiny structural changes in the brain caused by the disease a decade before symptoms even appear.
They trained their AI by feeding it 67 MRI scans — 38 from Alzheimer’s patients and 29 from healthy controls. The researchers divided the scans into small regions and had their AI analyze the neuronal connectivity between. After training was done, they tested the algorithm by having it process brain scans from 148 subjects. Out of the total number, 48 were scans of people with the disease, while 48 were scans of people who suffered from mild cognitive impairment and eventually developed full-blown Alzheimer’s.
Check out this Levi’s jacket with a smart sleeve
From The Verge:
More than a year after it was announced and two years after we first saw a demonstration of touch-sensitive fabric, the Levi’s jacket with a smart sleeve is finally going on sale. I’ve been wearing this Levi’s Commuter Trucker jacket for a few days now and it’s very nice — it fits well and looks great. And by swiping or tapping the fabric on the left cuff, I have been able to control my smartphone.
Whether those things add up to a $350 value — the price of this jacket — is entirely a different question. It’s targeted at people who commute by bike, and I think the only people beyond that target market are going to be a few techies and people who just really like jean jackets. It works with both Android and iPhone, by the way.
A standard Levi’s trucker jacket costs $148, though Levi’s has been quick to point out that designer denim jackets can run well over $400. I’m no fashion critic, but I can tell you I’m impressed with the fit and look of this one.
A device that detects fake spirits while still in the bottle
From University of Manchester:
Researchers at The University of Manchester have demonstrated that the world’s first handheld SORS device can detect fake spirits, such as vodka and whisky, whilst still in their bottles.
SORS, or ‘spatially offset Raman spectroscopy’, devices give highly accurate chemical analysis of objects and contents beneath concealing surfaces, such as glass bottles. It works by using ‘an optical approach’ where lasers are directed through the glass, enabling the isolation of chemically-rich information that is held within the spirits.
The researchers at Manchester used a Resolve handheld SORS system, from Cobalt Light Systems, to conduct their work in alcohol detection. These devices are already commercially available but usually used for security and hazmat detection, screening and pharmaceutical analysis. This latest version, developed at the University’s School of Chemistry in the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB), is the first time such a handheld tool is being used for a food or beverage product.
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