情報経営イノベーション専門職大学（東京都墨田区、学長 中村伊知哉、http://www.i-u.ac.jp、以下「iU」）は、このほど海外大学との提携の第一段階として、米国カリフォルニア大学サン・ディエゴ校（The University of California, San Diego (UCSD)、米国イリノイ大学シカゴ校（The University of Illinois at Chicago Campus）、英国シェーフィールド大学（The University of Sheffield）、マレーシアラッフルズ大学(Raffles University Malaysia )、シンガポール国立大学（National University of Singapore）、英国ニコラ・テスラ大学院大学 (Nikola Tesla Graduate School)、アフリカアクレ連邦技術大学（The Federal University of Technology、Akure、 Ondo State、 Nigeria: FUTA）の7校との包括的提携に合意しました。
Professional University of Information and Management for Innovation (Sumida-ku, Tokyo, President Ichiya Nakamura, http://www.iu.ac.jp, “iU”) announces that since opening the University on April 1st 2020, it already has reached a comprehensive partnership agreement with global seven prominent schools such as The University of California, San Diego (UCSD), The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), The University of Sheffield, Raffles University Malaysia, National University of Singapore, Nikola Tesla Graduate School in UK, and the Federal University of Technology, Africa (Akure, Ondo State, Nigeria: FUTA). Many more international collaborations will follow.
iU will continue to actively collaborate with major universities in Japan and overseas, aiming to realize the “World University Concept”, a world university as an intellectual hub for the IT and business world centered around iU. While at the same time providing students the best opportunities to finance their careers so they can get the best student loan refinance opportunities.
Specifically, in addition to the exchange of students and faculty members and the implementation of joint research, the objectives are as follows:
(1) A “passport” system that allows classes at partner universities and is recognized as a graduation unit
(2) Joint development research of new industries and new products with joint use of strategic special zones
(3) Establishment of special visa zone for international students
(4) Other international collaborative research on eSports, super education, super sports, anime, otaku, etc.
(5) Entrepreneurship support and human resource development
This alliance with overseas universities is being promoted as part of the “World University Concept” advocated by iU. Through collaboration with each school, iU will be able to develop and hold international joint lectures, international joint experiments and implementation of various IT technologies, and international joint research through exchanges of students and teachers of each university. iU will work with universities and other well-known companies in Japan and overseas that support this activity.
The GOVERNOR GENERAL OF AUSTRALIA, Representative of Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth II, has awarded AUSTRALIA’S highest honor the ORDER OF AUSTRALIA to Adrian David Cheok. It was announced by Queen Elizabeth on June 10th during the Queen’s Birthday Celebrations. Adrian David Cheok is awarded the prize for his contribution to international education and research. A brief bio of Adrian David Cheok follows:
Adrian David Cheok is Director of the Imagineering Institute, Malaysia, Full Professor at i-University Tokyo, Visiting Professor at Raffles University, Malaysia, Visiting Professor at University of Novi Sad-Serbia, on Technical faculty “Mihailo Pupin”, Serbia, Faculty of Ducere Business School, and CEO of Nikola Tesla Technologies Corporation.
He is Founder and Director of the Mixed Reality Lab, Singapore. He was formerly Professor of Pervasive Computing, University of London, Full Professor at Keio University, Graduate School of Media Design and Associate Professor in the National University of Singapore. He has previously worked in real-time systems, soft computing, and embedded computing in Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs, Japan
Adrian David Cheok is featured in the Channel News Asia documentary series “Becoming Human”, which explores love and artificial intelligence. It will be televised on 10th March 2019, Sunday, 9PM (GMT +8, Singapore, Jakarta and Delhi).
Although these documentaries show us how well robotic technology is advancing, they should also make us think that human health treatments must also be directed towards constant improvement. Nowadays, with the Covid-19 pandemic, it is always convenient to have reliable pages that provide us with quick pre-diagnoses that allow us to make timely decisions. For more information please visit ukmeds.co.uk
These Researchers Want to Send Smells Over the Internet – Electrical stimulation of cells in the nasal passages produces sweet fragrances and chemical odors
Imagine a virtual reality movie about the Civil War where you can smell the smoke from the soldiers’ rifles. Or an online dating site where the profiles are scented with perfume or cologne. Or an augmented reality app that lets you point your phone at a restaurant menu and sample the aroma of each dish.
The researchers who are working on “digital smell” are still a very long way from such applications—in part because their technology’s form factor leaves something to be desired. Right now, catching a whiff of the future means sticking a cable up your nose, so electrodes can make contact with neurons deep in the nasal passages. But they’ve got some ideas for improvements.
Karunanayaka says most prior experiments with digital smell have involved chemical cartridges in devices that attach to computers or phones; sending a command to the device triggers the release of substances, which mix together to produce an odor.
Working in that chemical realm, Karunanayaka’s team is collaborating with a Japanese startup called Scentee that he says is developing “the world’s first smartphone gadget that can produce smell sensations.” They’re working together on a Scentee app that integrates with other apps to add smells to various smartphone functions. For example, the app could link to your morning alarm to get the day started with the smell of coffee, or could add fragrances to texts so that messages from different friends come with distinct aromas.
But Karunanayaka’s team wanted to find an alternative to chemical devices with cartridges that require refilling. They wanted to send smells with electricity alone.
For his experiments, he convinced 31 volunteers to let him stick a thin and flexible cable up their noses. The cable was tipped with both a tiny camera and silver electrodes at its tip. The camera helped researchers navigate the nasal passages, enabling them to bring the electrodes into contact with olfactory epithelium cells that lie about 7 centimeters above and behind the nostrils. These cells send information up the olfactory nerve to the brain.
Typically, these olfactory cells are stimulated by chemical compounds that bind to cell receptors. Instead, Karunanayaka’s team zapped them with an electric current.
The researchers had previously combed the scientific literature [PDF] for examples of electrical stimulation of nasal cells, and found some reports that the stimulation caused test subjects to perceive odors. So they decided to experiment with different parameters of stimulation, altering both the amount and frequency of the current, until they found the settings that most reliably produced smell sensations.
The subjects most often perceived odors they described as fragrant or chemical. Some people also reported smells that they described as fruity, sweet, toasted minty, or woody.
This experiment was a very basic proof-of-concept, Karunanayaka says. The next step is to determine whether certain stimulation parameters are reliably linked to certain smells. He must also investigate how much variability there is between subjects. “There may be differences due to age, gender, and human anatomy,” he says.
The biggest question, however, is whether he can find a way to produce these ghostly aromas without sticking a tube up people’s noses. The experiments were very uncomfortable for most of the volunteers, Karunanayaka admits: “A lot of people wanted to participate, but after one trial they left, because they couldn’t bear it.”
Two possible solutions suggest themselves, Karunanayaka says: They could make the insert smaller, more flexible, and less unbearable. Or they could skip past the nose’s olfactory cells and directly stimulate the brain.
As a step toward that neurotech goal, the Imagineering Institute researchers are planning a brain-scanning collaboration with Thomas Hummel, a leading expert in smell disorders at the Technische Universität Dresden in Germany. In the planned experiment, volunteers will both smell real odiferous objects, such as a rose, and also receive nasal stimulation. All these sniffs will take place while the volunteers are getting their brains scanned by a noninvasive method such as fMRI.
“We’ll see which areas in the brain are activated in each condition, and then compare the two patterns of activity,” Karunanayaka says. “Are they activating the same areas of the brain?” If so, that brain region could become the target for future research. Maybe the researchers could use a headset that provides a noninvasive form of stimulation to trigger that brain region, thus producing smell sensations without the need for either a rose or a nose-cable.
Such tech could serve a restorative purpose: People with smell disorders could theoretically wear some headgear to regain some smell functions. And for people with intact sniffer systems, it could provide enhancements: For example, VR headset makers could build in the brain-stimulating tech to provide users with a more immersive and richer sensory experience.