DISCLAIMER: In this episode of Technically Speaking, we will be devising new and ingenious ways to prevent poachers from illegally killing animals in Africa. If you are a poacher, and are illegally killing animals in Africa, you should probably stop doing that and you should probably not listen to this episode because we’re not going to say very nice things about you and the kind of people you hang around with. YOU’VE BEEN WARNED!
On this episode of Technically Speaking, Joe and Jacob are joined by renowned Human Factors Psychologist Phil Jasper to talk about “the softer side” of engineering and technology – Human Factors! Fear not, young Techies… Phil’s area of study is deeply ingrained in the world of tech. It’s not exaggerating to say that every product which interacts with a human and requires an Engineer to design, likely also requires a Human Factors analyst to fine-tune and assist in the design. So with that in mind, even though Phil isn’t “technically” an Engineer, he’s certainly an honorary guest on our occasional “Who Wants To Be An Engineer” Segment!
After learning about Human Factors, Phil walks us through his current research project – The Bite Counter. The Bite Counter is a device that counts the number of “bites” you take (of food) in a given day (NOTE: NOT the number of “chews”. Yes, I was confused at first as well.). It does this through some incredible pattern recognition to distinguish the characteristic “wrist roll” humans tend to exhibit when they’re eating food. Don’t get it? Listen to Phil explain it, and we promise it will make sense. More importantly, Phil and his team have devised a way to use the Bite Counter to automate your diet! (So clearly this is right up out alley) Interested? Listen to Phil’s explanation and our mini-brainstorm on the topic, and see if you might be interested in helping out the study!
Finally we get to the poachers – This week’s brainstorm was inspired by listener Jake’s awesome email, letting us know about Robert Chew’s “Big Five” project and the art and philanthropy behind it (which graces this episode’s cover art). It got us thinking – how can we use technology to stop poaching in Africa? How suitable are UAV’s for this task? What about smart tagging? (And hey, while we’re at it, why do people poach in the first place?)
We want to hear what you think! Is it important to us as a society to stop poaching? (And if you agree, check out The Big Five and consider purchasing some art to support the International Anti-Poaching Foundation) Is there another space of solutions which we haven’t considered – chemical, perhaps? What about frickin laser beams!? Send us your ideas for this, and any other future brainstorm!
Run Time: 1:10:00