Sunday 5 June 2016

A Smart Toothbrush Just Won Intel's Maker-Themed Reality Show


Intel’s Button-Sized Curie Module

Intel had made attempts to make inventors cool last month and the company had brought tinkering into prime time with the presentation of America’s Greatest Makers, a reality TV competition on TBS with 24 teams of inventors that competed for a prize of $1 million. Intel’s involvement meant two things. For starters, CEO Brian Krzanich had been one of the main panel lists.

To also qualify for the competition, all of these projects needed to incorporate the button-sized Curie module of Intel that had been designed to power the coming wave of connected objects. Intel had developed the button sized module as a means of low-power base for consumers as well as industrial wearable, debuting it first at the CES in January. After seven weeks, the 24 teams had been shaped down to five with the season drawing to a close recently.

The winner was Grush, a three-person team whose smart toothbrush seemed to work with a mobile game in helping children to brush their teeth much more thoroughly than they would normally do. It is a kind of product which would be right at home at Intel’s futuristic CES booth. Grush’s smart toothbrush does not seem to be a completely novel idea. Besides this there have been smart utensils such as a vibrating fork while toothbrush giant Oral-B has been making Bluetooth brushes for years.

Built-in Sensors

However, Grush had been interested in just not on the account of how it functioned but also who it was intended for. Utilising built-in sensors, the toothbrush can inform you how you are holding it and hence what areas of the mouth one may or may not be reaching. With the Curie module’s on-board Bluetooth radio, the brush tends to send the data to an accompanying app which then turns the whole action of brushing into a game wherein you do not win till you hit all tough-to-reach areas in the mouth.

Paediatric dentist Anubha Sacheti, futurist Ethan Schnur and inventor Yongjing Wang are said to be the brainchild of the product. Wang, who’s PhD in physics, has made him the most engineering literate out of the three. As parents and in the case of Sacheti, dentists, they started with the issue that several people tend to have bad teeth and people seem to learn bad habits early, not because kids dislike brushing their teeth to start with.

Celebration Mode to Maker’s Mode

Grushs’ team had filmed the season finale in March which means that the victory had been kept a secret for around two months now. Schnur had also commented that they needed to jump from celebration mode back to maker’s mode. Thereafter the company needed to put out a product or at least get one ready for public demos. The next time in fact it is said that Grush would be at CES, where the team expect to join CEO Brian Krzanich during his annual Las Vegas keynote, on the stage. If it tends to go as planned, they would then be getting their hands-on with the toothbrush.

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