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14 November 2023

MEDICA 2023: Modern warfare, modern healthcare

Colonel Paul Parker, orthopaedics consultant at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham and the University College, Cork described the future of battlefield medicine at MEDICA 2023.

In a futuristic presentation he highlighted how the integration of medical devices, artificial intelligence (AI), wearable technology and drones will be transforming the way injuries are detected and treated. Not only enhancing the survival chances of soldiers, but also revolutionising the delivery of healthcare in remote and challenging environments.

One of the key advancements discussed in his talk was the use of wearable technology linked to central sensors. Wearable devices, such as the RAD watch, can be worn on the wrist or attached to clothing, providing real-time data on various vital signs. These devices can detect and monitor factors such as blood pressure, pulse, and even radiation exposure. The data collected could be the matter of life and death when prioritising care on the battlefield, especially in situations where immediate action is necessary.

He also spoke about the use of biosensor tattoos which could give an indication on the level radiation a soldier has been exposed to, which takes wearable tech to a whole new level.

The unescapable topic brought up was AI. The integration of AI and machine learning is a game-changer in pain assessment according to Parker who believes the technology will be more capable in detecting pain than humans – especially in combat.

AI wasn’t only discussed in pain management; Parker suggested that drones will incorporate AI for disaster response scenarios. Research indicates that drone and AI technologies can assess situations faster than human responders, making them invaluable in disaster-stricken areas.

10 November 2023

US startup releases wearable AI chatbot, powered by OpenAI

Artificial intelligence (AI) startup Humane has announced the release of its AI Pin, an OpenAI-powered AI chatbot that users can wear on their clothing. 

The release comes as the wearable tech industry and AI industry continues to boom. 

The Silicon Valley startup, founded by ex-Apple employees who worked on developing the iPhone, says its $699 device can talk to users, as well as display text and images on their hand.

Humane says the wearable AI chatbot completely removes the need for any home screen in technology and instead relies on a user’s touch and voice. The device is powered by ChatGPT creator OpenAI and cloud computing power from Microsoft. 

Demonstrations have shown the device being used for messaging and calling, an inbox summary called “catch me up”, real-time translation and giving nutritional information about food by holding it up to the camera. 

According to Wired, the company said it intends to add navigation and shopping abilities in the future – as well as give developers ways to build tools on their own. 

However, the main use for the device is AI.

“Ai Pin is the embodiment of our vision to integrate AI into the fabric of daily life, enhancing our capabilities without overshadowing our humanity,”  Humane co-founder and President Imran Chaudhri said in a statement. 

Humane has raised $241m from backers including OpenAI, Microsoft and more. The wearable tech industry was worth $99.5bn in 2022, and will reach $290.6bn by 2030, according to research company GlobalData’s Thematic Intelligence: Wearable Technology (2023) report.

AI is becoming increasingly important in the wearables market which comes mainly from the demand for conversational platforms on the go, the research company said.

20 October 2023

UK allocates £100m for AI-powered new drug development

The UK Government is making a £100m ($121.14m) investment to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to develop new, transformational therapies for previously incurable ailments.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced the AI Life Sciences Accelerator Mission, a new initiative in life sciences and healthcare.

The investment will be used in areas where rapid AI deployment has the potential to create transformational breakthroughs.

The mission will leverage the UK’s secure health data using AI to address eight tasks, including developing cancer therapies and dementia treatment.

The project will detect individuals at risk of ailments such as dementia and related conditions and they will join trials for developing new therapies. This approach will collect crucial data on the working mechanisms of such therapies. The latest grant will facilitate government investment in areas with increased clinical requirements in 2024 to 2025.

The government also intends to deploy AI in clinical settings to enhance health outcomes. By establishing a robust data infrastructure, it plans to enhance mental health research in the next five years.

Sunak stated: “AI can help us solve some of the greatest social challenges of our time. AI could help find novel dementia treatments or develop vaccines for cancer. “That’s why today we’re investing a further £100m to accelerate the use of AI on the most transformational breakthroughs in treatments for previously incurable diseases.”