HIV Can Now Be Detected in Just 15 Minutes – With A Smartphone!

Researchers from Columbia University have apparently created a $34 plastic smartphone STD scanner which would “accurately” identify HIV and syphilis antibodies. The scanner is said to be compatible with Google Android and Apple iPhone smartphones.

In order to perform one of these tests, a pin-prick of blood is needed for the scanner and from there onwards, the app is said to spit out the results in just 15 minutes. It is said that the device is able to replicate the mechanical, optical and electronic functions of a traditional lab-based STD analysis.

“This work is a proof of how technology can improve diagnosis and care, making it faster and simpler and cheaper without compromising the existing quality,” said Sabin Nsanzimana, the Rwanda’s Ministry of Health manager of STDs. Although “it may take time, or bigger studies” before additional knowledge of the dongle is known

However, attaching such a device to a smartphone should have raised concerns on power consumption. This is where the researchers stated that they chose a “one-push vacuum” instead of a power-consuming electrical pump.

The device is said to have been field-tested over two weeks at three health clinics in Kigali, Rwanda. The outcome stated that the accuracy was “on par with ELISA tests, but are significantly cheaper”. This means that similar tests can be completed in remote villages and health clinics.

The ultimate goal of the researchers over at Columbia University is to expand the testing beyond HIV and syphilis. But until then, additional testing could drive the price down while allowing mass adoption of the technology in the developing world, which is a good start.

Thank you Daily Tech for providing us with this information

Most Chinese Gamers Are Still Playing On PCs

A report points out that most Chinese gamers still play on PC and not consoles or mobile devices as most gamers all around the world do. China’s video game industry is worth around $13 billion, which represents a 40% increase over the past 12 months.

Breaking the figures down, we see that 64% of the total, $8.7 billion in revenue, was made through client-based PC games, taking up the majority of the gaming market. Aside from PC games, browser games also gained a fairly large amount, namely $2 billion, followed by mobile games with $1.8 billion, and on last place we see social games, with less than $1 billion in revenue. Though the mobile games industry is fairly small, a lot of focus has been placed on it, and investments are being made in developing mobile games.

Companies that received a considerable amount of money to expand its mobile development includes Tencent (for WeChat), Chukong, and Yodo1. But developers are still struggling to figure how to distribute and monetize mobile games, while more than 500 million iOS and Android devices roam the streets of China, and the number is expected to increase to 800 million this year. The top-grossing Android games on the market are reported to generate between $5 million to $10 million each month.

Many developers are focusing on HTML5 for mobile games due to it being supported on all mobile operating systems, and therefore grasping a wider audience. But although the list of top developers in China is still dominated by foreign companies such as Electronic Arts, Gameloft and Glu, Chinese developers are catching up, having a 30% (or $7.8 billion in revenue) increase each year.

Thank you Techcrunch for providing us with this information

Homeless Man Being Taught Coding Since August Launches His First App, Trees For Cars

You have probably heard about the homeless guy named Leo Grand and programmer Patrick McConlogue offering him a choice between $100 and 16 free coding lessons. Grand, homeless since 2011 after losing his job at insurance provider MetLife and being priced out of his home when a high-rise apartment block was built nearby, didn’t have to think for long and a coding life for him began.

Grand received a refurbished Chromebook and three books on coding, having McConlogue meet with him every weekday morning for some coding sessions. We are pleased to hear that Grand has released his very first app named Trees for Cars, available for iOS and Android. The idea behind the app, Grand said, is to decrease the number of cars on the roads with an eye toward reducing CO2 emissions. Users have to sign up and specify whether they want to catch a ride or offer one, and the app will connect them with fellow carpoolers nearby. The app will then track how much CO2 was saved by all the passengers. To be noted here is that Grand wrote every line of code, and all app purchases from both stores will go directly to him.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJ2INl29sfc#t=0[/youtube]

McConlogue’s tutoring was based on the course found here and you can also read the story of Grand’s remarkable journey here. And don’t forget to check out the app on iTunes and Google Play and maybe even buy it for $0.99 / £0.67.

Thank you Cnet for providing us with this information
Image and video courtesy of Cnet