The not-for-profit organization XPRIZE Foundation and communications giant Qualcomm launched the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE Competition in 2012, challenging anyone or any team to develop a practical, lightweight, mobile, real-world version of Star Trek's fictional Tricorder that everyday people could use at home, without the presence of a doctor or health care provider, to evaluate health issues.
Star Trek: Voyager: "Please state the nature of the medical emergency," which proved quite fitting for the event. Picardo then introduced Peter Diamandis, the founder of XPRIZE, who called the ceremony "the culmination of five years of work" that began at CES 2012, when the competition was announced. Diamandis related that April 12 is a momentous date, the anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's first manned space flight. The first space shuttle launch took place on April 12 in 1981. "And," he noted, "today we add another with Tricorder XPRIZE."
And then it was time announce the winners and their prizes:
StarTrek.com spoke to Dr. Harris in New York City the day before the Hollywood event, when he, executives from Qualcomm and XPRIZE, Robert Picardo and Dr. Chung-Kang Peng of Dynamical Biomarkers Group teamed up to ring the NASDAQ opening bell. He proudly showed off Final Frontier's entry, which is called DxtER. That's a mashup of Dx, which is medical lingo for diagnosis, T for Tricorder and ER for Dr. Harris' line of work. DxtER is an artificial intelligence-based engine that learns to diagnose medical conditions by integrating learnings from clinical emergency medicine with data analysis from actual patients. DxtER includes a group of non-invasive sensors that are designed to collect data about vital signs, body chemistry and biological functions. This information is then synthesized in the device's diagnostic engine to make a quick and accurate assessment.
Other details of note from the awards presentation:
Award-winning documentarian Morgan Spurlock was on hand with a camera crew. He went on stage to reveal that he's shooting a documentary about the competition and resulting devices.
XPRIZE also announced the continued support and involvement of the FDA and clinical testing assistance with UCSD, through 2020. Qualcomm announced an additional $2.5 million grant to UCSD to help support continued clinical trials to improve the Tricorder technology and noted that funds not disbursed to winning teams would be utilized for further development and initiating testing of the technology in real-world situations at a hospital in Mozambique. A final announcement came with the word that the Roddenberry Foundation would provide an additional grant of $1.6 million to fund the testing in Mozambique.
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