While Apple was announcing its latest iPhones, Intel was showing off a wheelchair. The chipset maker revealed its connected wheelchair on Tuesday, complete with endorsement from one of the world’s greatest living scientists, Dr. Stephen Hawking. The wheelchair is being created by Intel’s internet of things department, and is designed to take biometric information from the user and display it on touch screens.
Believe it or not, tech companies other than Apple did things on Tuesday, too! (And not just taking out the trash while tech journalist eyes were focused on Cupertino.) During its unfortunately-timed developer forum, Intel made an array of announcements, including a connected wheelchair endorsed by none other than Stephen Hawking himself. The Santa Clara, Calif., chip giant explained: “A team of Intel engineering interns designed a custom platform that can transform standard wheelchairs into data driven, connected machines.” The wheelchair proof of concept “enables the collection of biometrical information from the user, as well as mechanical information from the machine, that can then be analyzed. The team also built an application that allows wheelchair users to map and rate the accessibility of locations, further enhancing the user experience.”