A strong team of graduates have been working on an app for Windows Phone 7 that will aid in the fight against malaria, greatly benefiting healthcare workers in remote locations who may not have an Internet connection. Before it gets much-deserved recognition, the team are looking to win the Imagine Cup 2011 national finals in Seattle. The contest, sponsored by Microsoft, invites entrants to "imagine a world where technology helps solve the toughest problems."
Tristan Gibeau, the project's software designer, said "It's going to make a difference in trying to contain the outbreak of malaria. In the big picture, it'll hopefully help in the fight against most diseases out there and make everybody's life a little easier."
The app Tristan and his team have developed uses a a modified smartphone that features a microscopic camera lens. The application takes a photo of a blood sample and identifies malaria parasites, calculates how many are present and draws a red box around the clusters. Not only that, but the stored data can be uploaded for analysis to detect trends. Tristan is also said to be working on an app that detects sickle cells among other diseases.
Post-development and gold releases are planned to be easily adaptable for lab-based microscopes. Next steps for his team include patenting and marketing the application/technology.
What do you think of this entry into medicine for WP7, and how do you think this application (and technology) will impact healthcare workers in more remote, ill-equipped locations?