Why would anyone want to re-create technology from ’70s sci-fi TV? Well, here are a few million reasons: Qualcomm is offering a $10 million prize for the techies who can invent a modern version of a medical tool from the original Star Trek. 33 teams are competing to remake The Tricorder, Dr. McCoy’s handheld diagnostic device that could scan a patient, record data and analyze disease. Scientists from University of California San Diego scientists are among those rising to the challenge. Their OASIS project is building a device that can read blood and saliva and diagnose diseases from influenza and whooping cough to diabetes, HIV, and hepatitis. The prototype also takes vital signs, and its creators hope it will eventually be capable of connecting the information it collects with the surrounding environment. At least one thing hasn’t changed since the ’70s: the future is as exciting as ever.
A modern day medical marvel is inspired by 1970s science fiction.
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