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This Smart Bandage Can Take Your Temperature and Administer Medicine

A group of scientists at MIT have developed a futuristic hydrogel Band-Aid-like device that can incorporate a range of sensors and electronics. The versatile, programmable dressing will allow doctors to treat a range of injuries, continuously monitor a patient’s temperature and even release medicine when needed.

According to MIT, the stretchy hydrogel bandage—created by MIT professor Xuanhe Zhao and a team of graduate students—is made mostly of water and “was designed to bond strongly to surfaces such as gold, titanium, aluminum, silicon, glass, and ceramic.” The hydrogel is flexible enough that it can be applied to most body parts, including elbow and knee joints, and it can be outfitted with electronics programmed to release medicine at intervals or when a patient’s temperature rises.

“Electronics are usually hard and dry, but the human body is soft and wet. These two systems have drastically different properties,” Zhao says. “If you want to put electronics in close contact with the human body for applications such as health care monitoring and drug delivery, it is highly desirable to make the electronic devices soft and stretchable to fit the environment of the human body. That’s the motivation for stretchable hydrogel electronics.”

Check out Zhao’s demo video above.

[h/t: Springwise, MIT]

Banner Image Credit: Melanie Gonick/MIT

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The Evolution of "Two" in the Indo-European Language Family
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The Indo-European language family includes most of the languages of Europe as well as many languages in Asia. There is a long research tradition that has shown, though careful historical comparison, that languages spanning a huge linguistic and geographical range, from French to Greek to Russian to Hindi to Persian, are all related to each other and sprung from a common source, Proto-Indo-European. One of the techniques for studying the relationship of the different languages to each other is to look at the similarities between individual words and work out the sound changes that led from one language to the next.

This diagram, submitted to Reddit by user IronChestplate1, shows the word for two in various Indo-European languages. (The “proto” versions, marked with an asterisk, are hypothesized forms, built by working backward from historical evidence.) The languages cluster around certain common features, but the words are all strikingly similar, especially when you consider the words for two in languages outside the Indo-European family: iki (Turkish), èjì (Yoruba), ni (Japanese), kaksi (Finnish), etc. There are many possible forms two could take, but in this particular group of languages it is extremely limited. What are the chances of that happening by accident? Once you see it laid out like this, it doesn’t take much to put *dwóh and *dwóh together.

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Beyond Plumbing: 19 Other Jobs on Mario's Resume
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Nintendo made news this week by subtly announcing that Mario is no longer a plumber. In fact, they're really downplaying his whole plumbing career. On the character's Japanese-language bio, the company says, "He also seems to have worked as a plumber a long time ago."

But Mario has always had plenty of jobs on the side. Here's a look at his resume:

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