Fusionopolis and zoo trip.

White tigers.
White tigers.

We awoke to a wet morning from some rain in the night. I guess I slept through the thunder.
This made the whole day humid, but I think I am finally getting used to the climate here. First on the agenda was a trip to Fusionworld – Fusionopolis. Which was a part of the A*STAR institute which showcased its technologies to us in a gallery/guided tour format where we were taken on a guided tour of their facility. We started with a holographic promotional video which gave us back story to them.

Fusionopolis
Fusionopolis 

They showed us billboards which adjust their advertisement to the demographic in highest proportion around it for targeted marketing, such as age and gender. Voice recognition technology which instantly translates to local south east Asian languages. A voice activated mobile phone prototype which is currently only available in china. We were then shown a new type of body amour which was able to massively reduce the amount of force from an impact. A demonstration showed the same impact going from 45 N to 11N which has great applications in nursing homes for patients who are prone to falling so they don’t break any bones. They were made from a non-Newtonian fluid like cornstarch. A lack of photos from all of these is that we were not allowed to take photos of what we saw except for one room. We were then shown a massive touch screen which has applications in medical teaching for students to interact and see what a full brain scan looked like, including all of the components of the head. The next was really cool, a video game which was controlled with your brain waves. Granted it was pretty basic as a concentrate to move forward, however the concept of it and the progress is pretty cool. We were then shown another medical technology which uses optic fibres to monitor a patient’s heart rate and respiratory rate without the need for any wires. The benefit of this is that if a patient has sleep apnoea or stops breathing, the nurses will be notified immediately. The next room confused me, all it had was dim lights and fans on the walls which activated when approached. I thought it may have been some cooling or air circulation technology, turns out it was just a room for us to relax in from the information we were being given.

Relaxing room
Relaxing room

The final room was fun, as it had a projector on one wall with a webcam watching the projected screen. They had developed a way for laser pointers to be used as pointers with tablet devices, which lead the two tables of students taking turns playing pong and ice hockey on the projector screen.
Last of all we were shown a soft toy. This responds to input from a user, as having pets in retirement homes helps boosts moral, this too is trying to use the same approach to help the elderly with depression and to give them companionship. It responded positively and negatively depending if you stroked it, hugged it, or even gave it a wack. Also if left unattended for an amount of time it would start making noise and provide feedback to the nurses of how it was treated which would reflect the moods of the elderly who had them. We were then taken to the Sky Garden which was a really nice and relaxing place with many greenery and a great view of Singapore.

Sky garden
Sky garden

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From there we were dismissed and told to meet back at NUS at 1PM for a trip to the zoo.

Great food
Great food

We started the visit by meeting up with the exchange students from the biodiversity program again. Then were given back stage tours of the zoo including the food storage and kitchen for the animals, and the veterinary clinic which services all of them.
I then had a walk around the zoo for a while checking out a lot of the exhibits, including a show put on by some keepers and Asian elephants.

Elephants performing.
Elephants performing.

Overall the day was very nice, I got to see some new technologies and pretty animals while eating good food. What else would i want?

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