Tide Tips: Technology, Innovation, Patents and Startups C2: Volume 6


Tide Tips C2: Volume 6

You are reading Tide TIPS, a weekly round-up of all things Technology, Innovation, Patent, and Startup related.


The Way You Walk – The New Fingerprint?

Thought facial recognition technology was high-tech? Imagine if you could be identified by your walk… Computer scientists have developed a new powerful footstep-recognition system called SfootBD that will be able to identify you by your individual gait. This technology has had impressive results, with the average results of identifying individuals at 100 percent and an error rate of just 0.7 percent, making it almost 380 times more accurate than previous methods. This technology could pose a privacy issue, but don’t worry. This system needs floor pads and a high-res camera, as well as previously recorded gaits to identify, so it won’t be easy for just anyone to identify you. Still, this new technology is pretty neat and could be much less invasive than fingerprint or retinal scanners. (Gizmodo)

Programmable Genes

Biology and the computing industry are starting to have more and more in common. The powerful gene-editing tool, Cripsr, is making biology more programmable than ever. This tool allows scientists to modify the DNA of organisms at great speeds, even human cells. Many people are dying to use this technology, from academic researchers to agtech companies to biopharma firms. When there is demand, millions of companies pop up to fulfill it, like Synthego who was founded by brothers, Paul and Michael Dabrowski. They are not biologists, but software engineers that saw a use for their agile design knowledge in the form of creating gene editing tools. Companies like Synthego, Inscripta, and Twist Bioscience are quickly becoming the Amazon, Apple, and Intel of the biology world. (Wired)

Talk about Spinning Out

Chances are, you’ve either heard of or own a fidget spinner. The widely popular device seemingly came out of nowhere, with many people unaware of its origin. Interestingly, Catherine Hetter came up with the idea while visiting her sister in Israel. She noticed that children were throwing rocks at people and police, so she decided to think of a better way for them to channel their aggression. After selling a couple thousand of her fidget spinners at fairs, she tried to get toy companies to pick up her product. Hasbro tested the product before sending her a rejection letter. Ironically, after she failed to pay maintenance fees on her patent in 2007, her patent expired and many toy companies, Hasbro included, reaped the benefits as the device gained popularity. (Gizmodo)

Liberal Art to Tech Marketer

Are you interested in being a part of the exciting and quickly growing tech industry but worry that your liberal arts degree will make it impossible? Well, there may be room for you yet. With tech companies becoming some of the most sought out places to work, there will be a lot of competition, so you need to know how to stand out. With a liberal arts degree, you have the strength of critical thinking skills. For an industry that relies on constant improvement, this is a very valuable trait. You also have the added benefit of “work experience”, which can be in the form of clubs or organizations, as well as public speaking. Don’t forget about framing, which is the way you deliver your presentation of strengths and weaknesses. Be honest with yourself regarding your knowledge and you may just get that tech job of your dreams. (HubSpot)

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Have a tip? Let us know by sending the link to Ben, at bhbickerstaff@ua.edu