OK, so many of my get-rich-quick schemes haven't been what you would call blockbusters. My closest friends, family and even financial adviser scoffed several years ago when I came up with the idea for a new delicacy: Tuna on a Stick. Go ahead, laugh, but have you ever been to the Taste of Chicago? They sell everything on a stick at that exhibition of gluttony, so why not tuna? I had a grand vision of franchising all over Chicago, eventually expanding the menu to mackerel, red snapper, even Mahi Mahi (wouldn't you know it, a few years later when the Minnesota Twins' new ballpark Target Field opened, the concession stands boasted "Walleye Skewer" and "Pork Chop on a Stick").
More recently, I had the idea of creating a giant wiper blade that could descend from the top of a skyscraper to swoosh away the rain. Attach a hose or some sort of spraying mechanism and it also negates the need to have workers dangle hundreds of feet above the sidewalk with sponges and squeegees.
Surprisingly, I haven't joined the ranks of the 1 percent; I'm still slogging away in my cubicle. Not for long though. I'm turning my attention to transforming health care and getting ready to leave you 99 percenters in the dust. Yup, I plan on winning the $10 million X Prize. As you may have heard, X Prize Foundation and Qualcomm Foundation officials went to the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month to announce a "global competition to revolutionize" health care. "In this competition, teams will leverage technology innovation in areas such as artificial intelligence and wireless sensing — much like the medical Tricorder of Star Trek fame," the X Prize press release said. "The goal of the competition is to drive development of devices that will give consumers access to their state of health in the palm of their hand."
To win, a team has to develop a mobile platform that can diagnose "15 diseases across 30 consumers in three days." Oh, and developers must make sure that the information delivers a "compelling consumer experience while capturing real time, critical health information." As my six-year old twins like to say after doing their homework, "Easy peasy."
I'm sure that the X Prize competition will inspire all sorts of innovative ideas. As we reported last April, mHealth is already more than just a fad; it's a rapidly growing part of the health care industry. And it's not just app developers getting on board. Patients, doctors, hospitals are joining the movement.
But it's more than just mobile apps and consumer-oriented advancements that will revolutionize health care. Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston earlier this month announced that they successfully tested "a controllable endoscopic capsule … that has the ability to 'swim' through the body and could provide clinicians with unprecedented control when photographing the inside of the human body."
Current capsule technology "tumbles randomly" through the digestive track and clinicians have no control over where it goes, Brigham and Women's press release stated. This new capsule allows clinicians to actually "steer" it through the body using an MRI machine. And, they can view the images thanks to a wireless connection.
I'm sure that there are researchers at other medical centers and academic institutions doing similarly cool things. Who are they and what are they inventing? We want to know. We'll be writing about technology that could revolutionize health care in the coming months. If you know of something or someone, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.