Viral Video: Ellen on Bic for Her
Dear Friends and Family Who Intentionally Didn’t Watch the Super Bowl,
It’s ok with me if you don’t like football and don’t want to watch the Super Bowl. I understand how annoying it must be to be subjected to all the media hype that leads up to the game. It must be difficult to get away from the press conferences, the commercials, and the posts from those of us who are excited to watch the Super Bowl. Sorry for that.
I understand your concerns about professional sports in general. Yes, many athletes make a ridiculous amount of money. No, many athletes, coaches, and others affiliated with the teams aren’t good role models. You have legitimate arguments to make on those subjects. I get it.
I know there are many things you’d rather do than watch sports. You like to tell me – and everyone else – all about it. You want to remind us that you’re not one of the masses. You don’t follow the crowd. You’ve got something better to do.
Our smartphones already serve as cameras, flashlights, shopping assistants and construction tools. Thanks to University of Washington graduate Thomas Larson, you can now use your smartphone as a microscope.
Larson, who earned a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering last year, created a tiny lens that sticks to your phone camera and turns it into a microscope. You attach the lens, turn on your phone camera, take a microscope slide with the sample you want to examine, bring it close to the lens, and voilà, you can admire the sample on the screen in all its microscopic glory.
The adhesive, scratch-proof lens is made from a soft polymer material called PDMS. You can easily take it on and off, and wash it with soap and water if it gets dirty.
A group of UW students and faculty got to see the cell phone microscope in action during Larson’s CHANGE talk a few days ago. The talk was part of a bi-weekly series focused on using technology to help low-income communities around the world.
Larson spent more than two years developing the lens, working with a UW lab that wanted a mobile platform for studying blood clotting under a microscope.
“I started tinkering. Being in mechanical engineering was very useful because I had access to the machine shop,” he said. “With some of the earlier version, there was a problem with the lens falling off, but I think I’ve got the recipe now.”
The Micro Phone Lens is more than just a gadget. It could be used to help educate people in the developing world about sanitation.
“Just having a microscope to show people ‘look, there are little things swimming in your water, and that’s why you should wash your hands’ could have a profound impact,” Larson said.
Larson ran a Kickstarter campaign last summer to raise $5,000 for the project. He was a little surprised when 5092 backers pledged $91,524. Many people wanted to buy the lens as a gift for their kids and grandkids, Larson said. He also saw a lot of interest from teachers and the home-schooling community.
The lens Larson was selling to his Kickstarter supporters had a 15-times magnification. He has since made one that magnifies 150 times.
The idea of cell phone microscopes has been around for a few years but no inexpensive product is available on the market. You can buy Larson’s Micro Phone Lens for $15 on his website.
Before you get serious with this New York-born app, it really wants you to know one thing: this is NOT an online dating site but an “online social gaming platform where people meet, build their network, and hopefully find love on the way”. Hence, it will reduce the stress that comes with making (romantic) digital connections.
How you ask? Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB) makes it easy for it’s users to find potential matches without an onslaught of autobiographies and unwanted messages. Here’s how it works:
1. Using your profile, preferences and Facebook (they pull matches from your 2nd and 3rd connections), CMB provides you with one match or “Bagel” per day every day at 12:00pm EST.
2. Once you receive your match, you can browse photos, take a look at their micro profile and then choose to “Pass” on them or “Like” them. Oh, and you only have 24 hours to make your decision.
3. If you and your match both “Like” each other you are put in contact through the CMB private messaging feature. From there, the two of you can take it to the next level and set up a date.
4. If you pass on your match, you’ll never see ‘em again. Continue reading