One of our friends lost his grandfather to medical negligence. At that time there was no technology which would have notified the nurses about his critical condition. If they would have had constant updates about his condition, his life might have been saved. That has been the biggest source of inspiration for us. We wanted to build a hack that gives back to the community, by helping the disabled and bedridden navigate the hospital environment.
What it does
MyAssist is an integrated hardware application that aims to make patients’ lives easier. At its core is the technology integrated into the Myo Armband; by detecting a patient’s arm movements, we provide the patient with an easy way to communicate their needs with the medical faculty, without having to exert too much effort.
How we built it
We decided to use iOS for its intuitive and fluid nature. It took a while for us to completely flush out the details for our hack, but once we did, we got all the necessary hardware (and then some!) and got right to hacking. The application was created in Swift and Xcode, and we even managed to fit in Microsoft Azure for the backend.
Challenges we ran into
Although the Myo armband is a very cool piece of equipment, it does not do its job as well as it should. We frequently had trouble making it understand our commands, and concluded that it only registers large movements well. Most of our team had never even touched Apple development tools, so we had to learn almost everything from scratch.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We managed to talk to the Myo and get all the data it was reading. Using the Myo, our team looked around for different ways we could use it, and one application involved using the Myo to control LEDs to notify medical staff. We also managed to learn the basics of Xcode and Swift and build a really cool app in just under 24 hours.
What we learned
Properly interacting with the Myo was a major barrier to our project, but we eventually learned how to access the data and respond to the outputs appropriately. Since nearly all of us were Windows users, we had to learn iOS development on the fly, which actually proved quite exciting.
What's next for MyAssist
A smoother notification system and UI is something we want implemented in a future version of our project. The Myo Armband also proves finicky to use, so we are exploring other options to help the patient communicate better. We also want to utilize the capabilities of Azure much better, by adding more data fields to the database and providing medical staff with a cleaner way to access data.