We Rep [Ideas]

Enchanted Objects + Non Invasive Diagnostics Pt1

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Caress Non-Invasive Diagnostic Orb

Non-invasive self-diagnostic technologies are on the rise and represent a significant opportunity to positively impact the experience of managing chronic diseases like diabetes, encouraging greater adherence to diagnostics/treatment regimes; while also enabling a greater levels of education, awareness, and accessibility to people seeking to engage in more informed, healthier, hands-on preventative lifestyles.

A couple years ago a small team of friends including Andrew Lockhart, Kengwei Lu, Richard Thomas and myself decided to explore and submit a self-diagnostic concept to the annual Diabetes Mine Design Competition that incorporated non-invasive electromagnetic technology capable of measuring blood glucose levels. We were very excited to propose an idea (described below) that focused on improving, externalizing, and socializing the diagnostic process by making it more friendly, open, accessible and acceptable.


Caress Non-Invasive Diagnostic Orb

Often upon diagnosis of diabetes, people will retreat and internalize their experience. The nature of current glucose meter technology can exacerbate this issue by forcing people to navigate this new landscape by themselves, which in addition to increasing feelings of isolation, can put a strain on relationships with concerned family and loved ones.

Caress is an “enchanted object“, a diagnostic platform that combines physical hardware with web and mobile services to provide people living with (and without) diabetes a simple set of tools and services to monitor and track their blood sugar levels while providing the opportunity to socialize their experience and educate others. By utilizing existing non invasive electromagnetic technology developed at Baylor University and/or a number of other research centers, users will be able to accurately measure their glucose levels simply by touching or caressing the device, transitioning the blood glucose readings from a painful and awkward, private experience to one that is more natural, compelling and habit forming.

Caress Non-Invasive Diagnostic Platform

For tracking purposes Caress also employs hand vein scanning technology to identify and differentiate between users in order to allow friends, coworkers and family members to participate in the experience and see their blood glucose levels, promoting better understanding and removing some of the isolation that many people living with diabetes feel. Hand vein scanning was decided upon over fingerprint and other forms of biometrics as it is more accurate and is a more intuitive form of interaction when considering the intended form and function of the platform.

Caress - personal diagnostic and management platform web mock


Each Caress device will be networked with existing bluetooth, cellular and/or WIFI capabilities, allowing readings to be transmitted to the web services component of the platform through home or office computers or mobile devices. Users will be able to access their personal metrics around blood sugar levels etc through their computers or mobile devices, with the opportunity to receive mobile alerts when it is time to take a reading. Over time, the aggregated data will help users and their health care providers understand patterns of behavior and identify the optimal approaches to managing their health.

The Caress Non-Invasive Diagnostic Platform will evolve over two primary phases:
Phase I
As the electromagnetic technology is fairly nascent, Phase One will focus on creating modern sculptural devices (sample shown above) that can be placed in high traffic areas (i.e. within the home or office environment). Interior displays beneath the touch surface of the device will provide the user with their current blood glucose levels as well as relevant trend data. When the device is inactive, the display will show color coded “ambient” information representing various glucose levels and dynamic abstract visualizations of the most recent trend data to encourage and reinforce positive behaviors while attracting visual interest to initiate engagement and the socialization process.

Caress Non-Invasive Diagnostic Smart Phone "Skin"

Phase II
As economies of scale are achieved with manufacturing, integration of electro-magnetic diagnostic capabilities into the skins of mobile devices through a flat radial design will allow for a seamless experience as the skins (pictured above) will be able to capture a reading each time the device is used, transmitting readings directly to the mobile device and by extension, the online analytics experience. Unique ring tones can also be setup to remind the user when a reading is required. Mobile device Internet capabilities will allow data to be transmitted to and from the central web servers to either the mobile browser or native application. Integration with other mobile data services can seamlessly provide value add information such as where the nearest grocery or convenience store is or specific recommendation on actions to take to balance sugar levels.

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