Tuesday, February 22, 2011

We all die alone

Here’s a news story that I find incredibly depressing. Under the heading “Video analysis boosts healthcare efficiency and safety,” (SPIE web site, February 10th, 2011,) a group of Taiwanese researchers explain their work in developing video analytics technology for monitoring patients in health care facilities.

Two particular tasks are discussed: breathing detection, presumably so the health care workers know when to remove a corpse and ready the bed for the next patient, and wheelchair monitoring to detect “abnormal or dangerous behaviors, such as … attempting to leave their chairs to get into bed without assistance.”

From a technical perspective the work is very interesting, and clearly, given how populations are aging, especially in places like Japan, there is going to be some significant demand for products like these. I just don’t care for the idea that human interactions can be replaced by technology. I guess I’m just becoming a sentimental old fool, but it makes me wonder who is going to wipe the drool from my chin while I ramble on incoherently a few years from now.

1 comment:

Michel Coene said...

Given the aging of the population, computer assisted medicine and computer assisted care is unavoidable. It is up to us engineers to make sure it is done right!