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Camy

$10 million prize for RL 'Star Trek' tricorder

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A $10m (£6.5m) prize is on offer to whoever can create a Star Trek-like medical "tricorder".

The Qualcomm Tricorder X Prize has challenged researchers to build a tool capable of capturing "key health metrics and diagnosing a set of 15 diseases".

It needs to be light enough for would-be Dr McCoys to carry - a maximum weight of 5lb (2.2kg).

The prize was launched at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

According to the official Star Trek technical manual, a tricorder is a portable "sensing, computing and data communications device".

The kit captured the imagination of the show's millions of viewers when it was first used in the cult series' first broadcast in 1966.

In the show, which was set in the 23rd Century, the crew's doctor was able to use the tricorder to diagnose an illness simply by scanning a person's body.

When it happens, and I do mean when rather than if, it'll actually be life imitating art! W00T!!! :D

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-16518171

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How many doctors, nurses, paramedics, parents, and single folks would pay to have a "medical tricorder" type of device? -- Anyone who's ever seen it used on Star Trek. It's a pop culture icon, just like the communicator (flip-top or com-badge) and the phaser pistol.

We already have a Star Trek communicator, the cell phone. Very handy little gadget.

I wouldn't mind a general tricorder. I'd probably buy a medical tricorder for first aid responses at home.

There are times I could wish for a hand phaser.

I would imagine the first tries at a "medical tricorder" will be clunky and need more features. -- But a unit like that, all joking aside, could make a very real difference throughout the world. They might be able to cram in more diasgnostic scanning and lab testing than we'd think, too. -- I'm surprised no one's invented one yet. -- Anyone want to bet Apple would be happy to make one and stick a vowel in front of the name? iMedic? iDoctor? i'mADoctorNotAnApple?

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When it happens, and I do mean when rather than if, it'll actually be life imitating art! W00T!!! :D

Pretty much, and not for the first time. Flip open style cell phones are modeled after the original series communicator, ipads and tablets are modeled after The Next Generation's PADD device, (which is why Apple's attempted patent on the form factor is ridiculous) and of course the ubiquitous use of touchscreens on TNG has now become reality.

Life imitating art indeed.

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Pretty much, and not for the first time. Flip open style cell phones are modeled after the original series communicator, ipads and tablets are modeled after The Next Generation's PADD device, (which is why Apple's attempted patent on the form factor is ridiculous) and of course the ubiquitous use of touchscreens on TNG has now become reality.

Life imitating art indeed.

Perhaps we've already been to the stars - did something so dreadful that we had to be spanked for it - and are only now being allowed to remember technologies we once considered mundane and everyday.

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Gee, I have an actual communicator, molded from one of the actual props from the show. (It's better than the props, which were made of balsa wood and didn't do anything; mine actually chirps.) Maybe this is worth something. :icon6:

I'm still waiting for hospitals to get plasma screens with all the readouts Dr. McCoy had in sick bay. Man, those were cool -- and required no wires or tubes connected to the patient.

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I'm still waiting for hospitals to get plasma screens with all the readouts Dr. McCoy had in sick bay. Man, those were cool -- and required no wires or tubes connected to the patient.

That might be possible if you put the sensors in the exam table. Should be able to get heart rate, blood pressure and a few other readings.

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You can all keep your tricorders, the item I want is the replicator. It would be so cool just to tell it to serve dinner now, or have it run up a muscle-shirt, or to have it manufacture what ever else I wanted. Just think of the fully functioning blow-up dolls it could make.

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Perhaps we've already been to the stars - did something so dreadful that we had to be spanked for it - and are only now being allowed to remember technologies we once considered mundane and everyday.

Sounds like the basis for a good story. Slowly we not only get the technologies back that we now appreciate, but also the return of the sexual freedoms we should never have undervalued.

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Can you imagine the panic by every business leader and government if a useful, working replicator was actually invented? They would immediately, and forcefully, move to squash it with every means necessary. After all, if you can make anything you want, say, a new car or computer, in the comfort of your own home, why buy anything? The entire world economy would collapse completely, overnight!

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Can you imagine the panic by every business leader and government if a useful, working replicator was actually invented? They would immediately, and forcefully, move to squash it with every means necessary. After all, if you can make anything you want, say, a new car or computer, in the comfort of your own home, why buy anything? The entire world economy would collapse completely, overnight!

Not necessarily. Perhaps all that 'stuff' your replicator gets you is still manufactured by businesses all over the country and the replicator works like Newegg or Amazon and simply implements the transport from maker to wanter.

Of course, if the 'stuff' magically shows up the next morning in your living room like a Christmas present on the 25th, it would necessitate some new and improved shipping method, like an offshoot of those beam-me-up systems, and that might put some truckers and railroads out of business, but the b-m-u systems would have done that as soon as they were invented anyway.

If those businesses still do exist, the one using the replicator would have to expect those enterprises (see how I sneaked that word in there?) would need payment, but this is all fantasyland anyway, so we can assume we're living in an advanced age where the government pays for everything.

C

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Check out this article - http://www.cracked.com/article_18817_5-reasons-future-will-be-ruled-by-b.s..html

It's all about how Star Trek replicator technology would effect the economy. IThe main thrust is how in a post-scarcity world, B.S. becomes the most valuable commodity - "Oh, you're wearing REPLICATOR shoes? Mine were hand-stitched by a human artisan...very expensive, you know," or "We only sell authentic tree-grown apples - much more Earthy and satisfying than replicated apples! Totally worth paying for!"

You'll probably like the article's discussion on the internet's effect on book publishing and libraries - how the internet and ebooks are basically replicator technology, and how publishers are responding to post-scarcity data and information.

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There is one flaw in Gee's plan: You need mass, or at least energy, to replicate something. A transporter, you don't have that issue. But a replicator, you have to feed in stuff to recycle, and you need the right raw elements, unless your replicator is so gee-whiz cool (oh, sorry, Gee) that it can transmute elements. In other words, your replicator needs to be shovelled full of **** before it can output more stuff, and if you want anything fancy, it needs the "fancy" elements, gold, silver, whatever. (Silicon, though, is ludicrously common. A few sacks of sand and you have most of a new computer, just not the fancy bits.)

So, all of a sudden, the junk dealer and garbage man are the big business tychoons supplying the replicators with raw materials. That, and you can recycle your own...well, all kinds of things.

However, still a good idea to keep composting and fertilizing the veggies and flowers and trees. Gotta have good food.

EleCivil's right about the custom made items. That's the expectation what'll happen to printing. Everything's ebooks, but you can get a genuine, autographed, collector's edition, museum quality copy of your favorite book for the right price. Oh, and it'll be gift wrapped too, in a handsome keepsake box!

OK, fine. Could someone work on the cloning lab, please? I want to order a custom-designed boyfriend to my specifications. And no, he won't be a clone of me. In fact, he might be completely different from anyone I know. But hmm, let's see.... Uh, and if I did try a clone of myself for a boyfriend, well...oh dear, there's all sorts of problems with that, aren't there? Um, I wonder...would two clones be....

Wait, how much is that going to cost? Are you kidding me? Oh man, no way! I want my money back! Or at least the clone!

What happens if I get the discount rate?

Oh. Really? Wow. I get Bubba, huh? And he's kinda short and.... Sigh. Well, wait a sec. If Bubba there still has the personality traits I wanted...hey, Bubba! Yippee!

Huh? Oh, the super-discount rate is the blow-up doll? Fully functional, you said? Er, just how fully, uh, functional, er, um.... Golly, I'm not sure about that.

Bubba, come home!

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I am becoming more inclined to believe that in the future we are likely to follow the Soylent Green ​visualisation of civilisation, where the elite, rich and corrupt live in a protected citadel, whilst the poor, and deprived masses of humanity barely survive on the outskirts of the citadel. Forget the cannibalism and the GMO lentils of that future. The only viable alternatives to that corrupt capitalistic horror is a total social rebellion against the privileged oligarchy selfishly running things for their own benefit. It would be even worse if it was also theocratic.

Under these visualisations of humanity's future, I would suggest that a third group of humans, could develop, living further away from the outskirts of the citadel, where they have forsaken the extraordinary technologies for a simpler, perhaps even a primitive village community of day to day survival without the desires to have anything other just being content with such a simple existence.

However, even this becomes an unlikely scenario for survival of the human race. The starship that can wander the universe may well be our future, but the cost is the loss of a planet we can call our own; our home, and the danger of technology is that we become the mechanised Borg without a sense of compassion, let alone love.

No matter what we consider, the reality will be at variance with our projections, and we can but ponder the meaninglessness of our thoughts, whilst we wonder at the grandeur and beauty of the Cosmos. What we must never do is forget to laugh at our antics, or we become slaves to our musings of misery, displacing the only sanity in which we can really engage, love.

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You can all keep your tricorders, the item I want is the replicator. It would be so cool just to tell it to serve dinner now, or have it run up a muscle-shirt, or to have it manufacture what ever else I wanted.

Will it duplicate people? That could be a burgeoning business.

A guy I know once wrote a Star Trek story where the transporter malfunctioned and started recreating copies of people, seconds after they used the transporter. The show was ultimately not filmed, but it's an interesting idea. The script also put forth the idea that when you stepped on the machine, you were disassembled -- killed! -- and then a cell-by-cell copy of your body was reassembled somewhere else. Technically, you don't exist; only a clone does. But if your consciousness isn't aware of it, it doesn't matter.

(My brain now hurts.) :shock:

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Will it duplicate people? That could be a burgeoning business.

A guy I know once wrote a Star Trek story where the transporter malfunctioned and started recreating copies of people, seconds after they used the transporter. The show was ultimately not filmed, but it's an interesting idea. The script also put forth the idea that when you stepped on the machine, you were disassembled -- killed! -- and then a cell-by-cell copy of your body was reassembled somewhere else. Technically, you don't exist; only a clone does. But if your consciousness isn't aware of it, it doesn't matter.

(My brain now hurts.) :shock:

Yes, Pec, I remember a discussion that the transporter technology was related to the replicator. The interesting idea, however, was that if the transporter worked by copying and reassembling the cells, then it should be possible to reassemble with any diseased cells being replaced by healthy ones as per the DNA instruction for the particular cells. This would of course be an incredible advance in the treatment of disease. Presumably, it would be possible to arrange restructuring one's features to enable such things as oral investigations of one's own anatomy.

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...Under these visualisations of humanity's future, I would suggest that a third group of humans, could develop, living further away from the outskirts of the citadel, where they have forsaken the extraordinary technologies for a simpler, perhaps even a primitive village community of day to day survival without the desires to have anything other just being content with such a simple existence.

Be careful of what you wish for, Des.

I am flashing on the late unlamented hippy communities that dotted the landscape of backwoods Vermont, British Columbia, and elsewhere on this continent during the 'sixties. They produced few actual contributions to the culture besides tie-dye and some awesome song lyrics.

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Be careful of what you wish for, Des.

I am flashing on the late unlamented hippy communities that dotted the landscape of backwoods Vermont, British Columbia, and elsewhere on this continent during the 'sixties. They produced few actual contributions to the culture besides tie-dye and some awesome song lyrics.

It wasn't so much a wish as it was a speculation, albeit based on your stated hippie communes, which by the way were met with varying degrees of success here in Australia. But then it could be argued we Aussies are all hippies anyway; except for the rightwing conservative extremists who will not just lay down and be conservative by themselves.

We did benefit form the same awesome songs and tie-dye, as well as the most awesome vegetarian rennet cheese, called Nimbin, and yes it is still available. (I have no connection with Nimbin except as a satisfied customer.)

I would be surprised if there were not some members of the human race who did not reject technology for the sake of a simpler life. And no I am not referring to Amish style communities, but rather to those people who do not want to be trapped in the rat race. Such people may well contribute to the culture in a variety of ways, whilst avoiding the entanglements of corporate society as much as they can. The difficulty such people face is with government that overly regulates their lives or does not meet its responsibilities to protect its people from harm. Where these exist, individual freedom is at risk of becoming snared in regulatory purgatory.

It occurs to me that we need to obey the prime directive to not interfere with cultures that cause no threat to humanity, but in saying that, I am aware that few of our activities are without consequences that, at the least, seem threatening. Truly, the path to enlightenment is a razor's edge, and even the transporter may not operate fast enough to save us from splitting ourselves in half.

Now if we can just work out how to operate the tri-corders video input we could make a video of that event and post it on YouTube.

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