February 22, 2024

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Assistive augmentation makes chewable tech possible

Credit: University of Auckland

Imagine having a device that feels like a piece of chewing gum, with dimensions similar to it, which allows people to answer the phone by simply biting down to it.

According to a recent press release, Chewit is a tiny piece of technology that is encased in a flexible custom made PCB that is popped in the mouth.

It is a novel interface with the technology capable of answering the phone.

The interface allows the user to have a discreet and hands-free interaction with their phone, their computer, and their smartwatch, among others.

It is developed by the Augmented Human Lab team at the Auckland Bioengineering Institute (ABI) of the University of Auckland, in New Zealand.

Innovative Technologies

Associate Professor Suranga Nanayakkara led the team that developed Chewit. He made international headlines in recent years for his work with the FingerReader.

The FingerReader is a prototype device worn on the finger that allows users to point at words, such as those on the spine of the book or in a restaurant menu, which is then translated to voice.

Since he moved from Singapore to New Zealand, the Associate Professor and his team have produced a number of innovative technologies.

Aside from Chewit, another innovative technology that they have developed is the GymSoles.

It is a pressure sensitive insole that vibrates and gives users vibrotactile feedback to help them maintain the correct body posture.

As reported, GymSoles was tested and shown to be effective on people performing certain exercises such as squats and dead-lifts, to help them maintain the correct centre of pressure.

Assistive Augmentation

Moreover, the Associate Professor implements an almost philosophical approach to technology.

He aims to address a mismatch between what technology has to offer and the innate human behaviour.

His research is focused on developing technologies that are more responsive to innate human behaviour instead of obliging humans to adjust to the requirements of the technology.

The team aims to design and develop systems that can understand the user rather than having them tell the technology what to do every time.

They want technologies that can understand people much better that what the current technology does.

This type of technology, according to him, is called ‘assistive augmentation’.

Assistive augmentation is when the system understands the abilities, behaviour and emotions of the user.

In addition, it is when the system is unobtrusive and integrated with the body of behaviour of people.

He added that it should be about strengthening and extending the physical and sensorial abilities of the user, which allows them to do what they could not do before.

Assisted augmentation is meeting all three of these measures.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

PARTNER

CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

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Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

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HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

PARTNER

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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