This was written by Sharona Mandagie, an undergraduate Communication student in her last semester. Sharona in her spare time likes being immersed in a good book or going for a run around her neighborhood.
Social Innovation Seed Fund Recipient
Ehsan Daneshi, is an SFU computational neuroscience Ph.D. candidate. He and his Ophtalight Digital Solutions team have developed a device called the O-glass, a portable, wireless headset that looks quite similar to a VR headset. No, this device won’t take you to a world of virtual reality but it can help detect early signs of illnesses such as eye cancer, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s. Recently, it has been able to test for impaired drivers on the road that are under the influence.
This past summer, the O-glass has been tested among medical practitioners to provide accurate eye tests as it can help diagnose and monitor patients for eye cancer, glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, diabetes and other illnesses. The most up to date prototype of the O-glass can perform the Swinging Flashlight Test, something that is conducted by all optometrists and ophthalmologists. This simple yet important test determines whether the patient has any damages to their optic nerve. Not only does this device help early detection of diseases, this can improve the quality of eye care as well as reduce eye care costs for patients. There are many major benefits of having the O-glass being used in healthcare as it is easy to use and test results can be transmitted wirelessly to a cloud-based software. This can be especially of great aid for those in remote rural areas as well as under-developed countries where patients have limited access to eye doctors and ophthalmologists (many of the tests are done by nurses). Using the O-glass allows test results to be sent to an experienced ophthalmologist in another city or area allows them to give feedback in real-time efficiently.
However, the O-glass can also use eye stimuli to detect impaired drivers on the road, a device that is currently not in the market. Police officers are only able to test those who are suspected of drug-impaired driving by performing routine eye tests with a flashlight. These tests tend to be subjective depending on the officer’s training, experience, and their interpretation. The O-glass will help perform sobriety test by using the built-in cameras in the device to record the driver’s eye movements, which tracks the change in pupil size and jerkiness of pupil motion in reaction to a series of light patterns displayed on the screen. As of right now, standard field-sobriety tests have suspected drivers perform the horizontal gaze nystagmus, walk and –turn and one-leg stand test but this device, “ …has the ability to produce admissible court evidence by creating results containing charts and photos of the driver’s eyes. The user-friendly software interface helps eliminate human error and can be used on any mobile device,” according to Daneshi.
Check out the video here
The O-glass is currently undergoing clinical trials and is expected to be market ready by 2018 to coincide with the government’s movement towards national-wide cannabis legalization. But it is safe to say that it will be a game changer in both the healthcare industry and law enforcement field in the near future.
Embark contributes $12,500 to student projects each year through the Social Innovation Seed Fund and Sustainable Community Grant to help launch innovative ideas. By voting YES in our upcoming graduate student referendum, you are saying YES to funding SFU students like Daneshi so their project ideas can come to life!
Vote YES in Embark’s upcoming grad student referendum:
Graduate students, go to http://websurvey.sfu.ca/survey/261114938 to vote November 29 (8 am) – December 1 (11:30 am).