Nonlinear Thinking: iPhone Can Detect Blood Disorders

The legacy of Steve Jobs will live long and reach wide.   It’s amazing to think the transformation his vision and technological genius had, is having, and will continue to have on the global economy and society at large.  What a loss.

We’ve posted several pieces on how the iPhone can be transformed into an EKG monitor, cataract detecting device and how the iPad or iPhone has the potential to become a medical clinic in a remote village in Africa, for example.   How about a device to detect blood disorders?

Technology Review reports,

A cheap lens that enables a cell phone’s camera to discern the shapes of cells in a blood sample could make it easier to diagnose conditions such as sickle-cell anemia in places without medical infrastructure.

The system was developed at the University of California, Davis, and is designed to allow field workers to photograph blood samples from patients, and then send the micrographs to doctors via the cellular network for interpretation.

Although others have coupled microscopes to cell phone cameras, the Davis group aimed to make its device inexpensive. It did this by using a very simple lens that is made from a single ball of glass about one millimeter in diameter and held in position in front of the camera with a small piece of rubber. That small size results in a high curvature that provides good magnification, says Sebastian Wachsmann-Hogiu, a physicist with Davis’s Center for Biophotonics, Science, and Technology, and the leader of the research team. Because a cell phone camera also uses lenses with a short focal length and a miniaturized sensor with very small pixels, it’s optically compatible with the small ball lens. “You couldn’t do this with a regular camera, the distances there are too big,” says Wachsmann-Hogiu.

The world is in the midst of a major technological revolution led by the Apple infrastructure,  which is transforming everything from how we protest, do politics, shop, read, communicate, pay bills, manufacture, trade and invest,  and just about everything else you can think of.   Let’s hope the policymakers recognize this when thinking how to generate growth and deal with unemployment.

(click here if picture is not observable)

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1 Response to Nonlinear Thinking: iPhone Can Detect Blood Disorders

  1. Pingback: Nonlinear Thinking: The Future of Medical Services | The Big Picture

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