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Houston Space Health Innovation Challenge – after dark

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Like all good hackers and energetic innovators, participants in the Space Health challenge are still engaged in problem solving Sat evening. After a quick burrito or rice bowl from Chipotle, teams are back at work. Teams are preparing presentations and demos.

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The SPOC team is hard at work with their webcam on an innovative approach to detect heart rate in a moving person. Current technology works for a subject seated quietly in front of a webcam. After initializing the webcam on a seated person, the application attempts to continue tracking pulse as the subject moves around in the area covered by the camera.

Another team has decided to use crowd sourcing to help NASA locate objects that are lost in space (inside the space craft). Players can view NASA video and identify the locations of movable objects. As the number of “sightings” increases, the probability of identifying a location goes up. Practical problems abound. This is not necessarily a real-time solution, although there is a capacity to generate a virtual flash crowd in an emergency.

AstroNanny, on the other hand, intends to leverage the existing capabilities of terrestrial object tracking in commercial security systems. Starting with a database of current locations of hazardous objects, including those hidden behind access ports, the program will track the astronaut and issue a warning if a hazardous object is nearby.