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How Smartphones are Transforming the Healthcare Industry?

The Department of Defense (DOD), through the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is using predictive analytics. Smartphones are transforming the healthcare industry. The DoD wants to eventually deploy this technology through a $5.1 million contract with Kryptowire.

Kryptowire, a startup funded by the Department of Homeland Security, specializes in mobile app security. They are working on a technology that gathers and aggregates data from smartphone sensors, both in clinical trials and in actual everyday use, to help improve health.

Smartphones for Healthcare Industry

Kryptowire’s technology is part of DARPA’s program called Warfighter Analytics. Smartphones are transforming healthcare and designed to assess a person’s various physiological signals in real-time. This can also monitor health remotely, track medication use and adherence, and even smartly detect any illness or physical impairment.

Smartphones are Transforming the Healthcare Industry
Can a smartphone detect illness? Yes, with Kryptowire’s technology

DARPA Program Manager, Angelos Keromytis, MD, explained how this technology is beneficial to members of the armed forces all over the country.

“Currently, understanding and assessing the readiness of the warfighter involves medical intervention with the help of advanced equipment,” he said, “such as electrocardiographs and other specialized medical devices, that are too expensive and cumbersome to employ continuously or without supervision in non-controlled environments.”

He explained that in this smartphones era, 92% of adults in the US own a cell phone. Smartphones are transforming healthcare, “It could be used as the basis for continuous, passive health, and readiness assessment,” he added.

Kryptowire’s new tech is built to work on both iOS and Android smartphones—the two leading operating systems in mobile technology. It has several positive features, according to their officials.  The tech allows secure access control to devise data, ease of deployment at scale, data anonymization, and transparent data collection.

More Than Just for Service Members

The priority of Kryptowire is to assess service members’ health through their program. Experts believe that technology may be very well used beyond that purpose.

The company revealed that their aim is to develop it as a customer-facing technology eventually. This allows the detection of health problems to be as early and accurate as possible.

Kryptowire’s CEO Angelos Stavrou explained the company’s many plans for their disruptive technology. “Our strategy is to leverage the full power of mobile to collect health metrics in all patient settings,” he said. He elaborated that it could be for “continuous monitoring, from clinic to home, and to build the ground truth from all available data, including smartphone sensors, clinical studies, medical examinations, etc. for a better-informed, real-time approach to disease detection and biomarker identification.”

With each bold idea, there will be people who will doubt every aspect. Critics say Kryptowire’s monitoring technology may pose concerns, especially regarding privacy and security as it uses a smartphone’s camera, microphone, and sensors to detect any health-related issues and monitoring of vitals.

Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst with the American Civil Liberties Union, explained why “People don’t want to feel like someone is listening in on their private life. That’s going to have to be subject to tight controls,” he said.

This bold idea, life-changing, and life-saving technology may turn some people off. It will be up to Kryptowire to address these potential concerns.

Netflix Management Team – Bold Leadership Style Explained

Netflix recently announced that their subscriber base increased by 7.41 million for a total 125 million subscribers worldwide. Their earlier forecast was an increase of 6.5 million. In the U.S., the number grew by 1.96 million, topping their 1.48 million forecast. Along with this growth, the streaming media provider’s stock prices continue to grow. For instance, it now has a 60% growth rate since the start of the year. Much of this growth is because of the management structure and their bold leadership style. This business also operates differently from other media companies.

Structure for Growth – Netflix Management Team

The company started with DVD sales and rental by mail in 1997. However, the following year, it dropped the DVD sales service, focusing on DVD rentals until 2007. It started offering streaming media in the same year. Netflix started expanding internationally in 2010, starting off in Canada. In 2016, it became available worldwide, except in China, Syria, North Korea and Crimea.

The secret to the Netflix success has been attributed to their programming, with over 126 new series and films in 2016. This is the most number of new offerings from a media distributor, TV network or cable content provider. 

Uniquely, Netflix has been able to produce this much content due to their structure and strategy for acquiring content.

In most studios or cable companies, only one department handles content. The projects are also usually only signed up for one season, with the discretion to pull out at any time. Netflix has an entire committee, and any of the members can approve or recommend a series or film. Series that are approved are given two seasons. This allows Netflix subscribers to binge-watch.

Programming head Ted Sarandos is at the top of the decision-making committee. People up to two levels under Sarandos have the authority to approve a series or buy the streaming rights to a movie or show. A Netflix culture aptly called “Freedom and Responsibility” encourages faster decisions while also accommodating audience preferences.

Moreover, this also allows Netflix to spend more on programming compared to their competitors. In 2018, they would be spending up to $8 billion for 700 original series, films, documentaries and other programming.

R-Staff and E-Staff

CEO Reed Hastings meets with a group of people called the “R-staff”. They directly report to him and meets monthly. The group includes Netflix veterans like Sarandos and the company’s general counsel, David Hyman.

Under the “R-staff” are the “E-staff”, or executive staff who oversee various teams within the company, each with their own particular focus like platform engineering, regional marketing, and content. With their global reach, the E-staff has reached more than 100. The R and E-staff meet together about 10 ten times a year to discuss strategic initiatives. Furthermore, these discussions include which country to prioritize, and the level of broadband penetration in a particular country.

Additionally, there is another larger group composed of directors, those below vice presidents, who meet quarterly to review the current state of Netflix.

Content Team

Sarandos works with seven vice presidents on the content team. They discuss shows and movies, including original content and unscripted series. Each of the vice presidents has their own team directly reporting to them.

The hub of Netflix is Sarandos’ content team. He currently has seven VPs reporting to him in areas ranging from original shows, movies and unscripted series to licensing movies and TV shows. Each of these vice presidents also has his own team. Incidentally, the company’s expansion outside of the United States resulted in the expansion of the international content team.

What is Flutter and Can it Be Stopped?

Flutter is a word that people do not hear very often – and behind its obscure definition hides a reality that it has already taken so many lives. However, engineers and scientists around the world are doing everything they can to come up with a proper solution and stop the disasters caused by a flutter. The said phenomena affect structures like buildings, bridges, road signs, and power lines.

Experts use the term flutter in order to describe an incident or phenomena where an object experiences unstable oscillation due to aerodynamic forces, inertial effects, and structural elasticity. The phenomena could easily result in an accident. Especially when immersed in a fluid flow, such as sturdy winds and strong water currents.

One example of a flutter incident was the fall of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in 1940. There were different theories made to explain what caused the collapse of one of the most popular bridges in America, but flutter turned out to be the more realistic answer.

According to the witness, Professor F. Bert Farquharson, “We knew from the night of the day the bridge opened that something was wrong.”

The Bold Action: How to stop the Phenomena of Flutter

Experts are continuously looking for ways to prevent such accidents from happening again. In the meantime, the aviation industry is making no mistake as cases of flutter occur more often on planes.

To date, engineers believe that earlier airplane crashes were the result of flutter occurrences. They now put more focus on the design elements of both the tail and wings. For the design of the aircraft, engineers use the processes of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and the finite element analysis (FEA).

CFD allows scientists and engineers to calculate moment characteristics and aerodynamic force of the plane at different sideslip, speeds, angles of attack, and atmospheric settings. On the other hand, FEA helps them recognize the plane’s structural properties like deformation under load, natural frequencies, and vibrational modes.

Developing a refined mathematical model that has the ability to capture flutter is what scientists and engineers want. If they ever come up with a model, scientists could predict the condition of a specific structure. They can also test their predictions in a controlled experimental location.

It is easy to predict if there is a flutter in a structure. However, experts are currently having a hard time recognizing its after effect. Scientists are still trying to create a more advanced mathematical model in order to capture the after-effects of the flutter.

“It sounds simple, but the mathematics are exceptionally complex and the stakes of being wrong are great. There is no room for error.” – David Amsallem, Engineering Research Associate

Scientists have already tried their best to propose various intricate models in the past. However, some of them were not able to work properly and others just failed to provide the right information.

Turning Negative into Positive

Engineers and scientists discovered that it is also possible to gather energy from certain kinds of flutter. They say that people could harvest a small amount of energy by using a tiny metallic strip just centimeters long. In order for the strip to generate energy, it needs to fluctuate similar to a flapping flag.

Using a practical mathematical model, engineers could gather energy efficiently from sources such as a moving car or just the wind. The bold action to generate energy from a flutter using waving strips is going to benefit many people. They could charge phone batteries and might even deliver power to remote places.

The presence of flutter has been around since men started building structures. It was only acknowledged during the era of the Cold War – and now things need to change. Flutter is a double-edged sword because it has negative effects but it also has positive ones. Authorities must give more time and conduct more studies about the phenomena in order to understand it better.

Saudi Arabia Breaks Fashion Barriers with First Ever Fashion Week

Fashion Week is often associated with places like Paris, New York, and Milan. However, a recent event is breaking molds and creating bold impacts: the inaugural Arab Fashion Week in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia’s capital and most populous city. The country is changing and also recently added AMC movie theaters to the mix.

Riyadh’s version of the fashion week was very different from the usual scene that screams posh.  It, however, was monumental on its own. It featured both local and international designers. Riyadh’s event also featured something else much more spectacular: there were no photographers allowed, and the audience was 100 percent female.

Change in Saudi Arabia’s Entertainment Industry

Continuing a Modern-Day Revolution

Saudi Arabia has been making bold impacts lately. Only recently, AMC – the world’s largest movie theater chain – received the first ever license to operate movie theaters in the country. Their first of potentially many other theaters opened also last April in Riyadh. This 35-year ban on cinemas is monumental, inspiring a modern-day revolution in Saudi Arabia’s entertainment scene.

“It is big news with global significance,” says AMC’s chief Adam Aron. The company is aiming to open as many as 40 cinemas in the country over the next five years. The move will create new jobs, generate income, and forever change Arab entertainment.

In a similar light, the country hosting its first fashion week after a number of delays is a monumental feat on its own. Major names in fashion such as Roberto Cavalli and Jean Paul Gaultier are there, as well as several local designers.

Despite men being allowed to attend Arab Fashion Week’s opening ceremony, the rest of the actual catwalk shows did not allow them to enter – and neither were photographers. The main reason for these rules was because models weren’t dressed in traditional abayas (long cloaks) or head scarves.

Impact to Women

In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, majority of people are Muslim. Muslim laws and traditions are sacred; As such, women in the country have been fighting for equality. While they have made significant impacts, they still face a number of restrictions. One of them is wearing clothes or makeup that “show off their beauty.

Women in Saudi Arabia follow a strict dress code that strongly follows Islamic law. It differs depending on which part of the country women are. For example, certain parts allow women to actually show their face, but many still do not think it is acceptable. Only recently, one of their prominent clerics proposed for even more modesty.  Women must refrain from wearing “any abaya that has any decorations… No embellishment, no slits, no openings.”

Marriam Mossalli, a luxury consultant based in Jeddah, explained how else fashion week was monumental for the women of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia:

“[It was] an amazing opportunity to shift the disconnect in the minds of outsiders about Saudi women, how they design and how they dress. Women here have been waiting for years for a time to shine.”

Unexpected Success

The country’s first ever Fashion Week almost did not happen, but it’s not because of the strict policies. Interestingly, models, journalists, and buyers had trouble obtaining visas to enter the Kingdom legally. This caused a delay in the event a few times.

Organized by the Arab Fashion Council, Arab Fashion Week is a success for women all over Saudi Arabia. Finally having this, as well as the AMC theater openings, are just a few steps into the country’s various changes. They will most likely spark debate and divide the nation and the world. These are bold societal impacts that most people elsewhere take for granted. Hopefully, the Kingdome of Saudi Arabia will soon welcome other previously banned forms of entertainment.