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A blind inventor created a 'smart cane' with Google Maps to help visually-impaired people get around

It also makes walking safer.

via WeWalk / Twitter

According to the World Health Organization there are about 250 million visually impaired people in the world and about 20% of them use a white cane to get around.

While a white cane can help people avoid obstacles at ground level they are left unprotected from objects from the chest up.

Smartphone technology has made it easier for visually impaired people to navigate streets and sidewalks, especially in unfamiliar areas, but it's tough to use a cane in one hand and smartphone in the other.


Kursat Ceylan, a blind Turkish inventor along with engineers from Young Guru Academy, have solved some of the major white cane problems with a new smart cane called WeWALK.

via WeWalk / Twitter

The WeWALK has an ultrasonic sensor that detects obstacles above chest level and warns with a vibrating handle so seeing impaired people can walk with greater safety and confidence.

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The high-tech stick connects with Google Maps to inform users about infrastructural details or businesses near them that they may not know about in real-time. The smart cane also allows users to operate their bluetooth-enabled smartphones via a touch pad in the handle, leaving the other hand free.

"As a blind person, when I am at the Metro station I don't know which is my exit ... I don't know which bus is approaching ... [or] which stores are around me. That kind of information can be provided with the WeWalk," Ceylan told CNN.

The smart cane is engineered so it can incorporate new technologies as they are developed and will soon allow users to connect with Uber, Lyft, and Amazon Alexa.

Studies show that visually-impaired people suffer from severe loneliness than sighted people. Inventions like the WeWALK can hopefully make it easier for these individuals to be more socially active.

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Ceylan thinks it's about time visually-impaired people can get the full benefits of smartphone technology.

"In these days we are talking about flying cars," Ceylan told CNN, "but [blind] people have been using just a plain stick."
The WeWALK is available for $500.

Innovators
via Gage Skidmore / Flickr

If you are totally ready to move on from Donald Trump, you're not alone. According to a report last April from the Wason Center National Survey of 2020 Voters, "President Trump will be the least popular president to run for reelection in the history of polling."

Yes, you read that right, "history of polling."

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Politics
via Around the NFL / Twitter

After three years on the sidelines, Colin Kapernick will be working out for multiple NFL teams on Saturday, November 16 at the Atlanta Falcons facility.

The former 49er quarterback who inflamed the culture wars by peacefully protesting against social injustice during the national anthem made the announcement on Twitter Tuesday.

Kaepernick is scheduled for a 15-minute on-field workout and an interview that will be recorded and sent to all 32 teams. The Miami Dolphins, Dallas Cowboys, and Detroit Lions are expected to have representatives in attendance.

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"We like our quarterback situation right now," Miami head coach, Brian Flores said. "We're going to do our due diligence."

NFL Insider Steve Wyche believes that the workout is the NFL's response to multiple teams inquiring about the 32-year-old quarterback. A league-wide workout would help to mitigate any potential political backlash that any one team may face for making an overture to the controversial figure.

Kapernick is an unrestricted free agent (UFA) so any team could have reached out to him. But it's believed that the interested teams are considering him for next season.

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Earlier this year, Kaepernick and Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid reached a financial settlement with the league in a joint collusion complaint. The players alleged that the league conspired to keep them out after they began kneeling during the national anthem in 2016.

Before the 2019 season, Kaepernick posted a video of himself working out on twitter to show he was in great physical condition and ready to play.

Kaepnick took the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2012 and the NFC Championship game in 2013.

He has the 23rd-highest career passer rating in NFL history, the second-best interception rate, and the ninth-most rushing yards per game of any quarterback ever. In 2016, his career to a sharp dive and he won only of 11 games as a starter.

Culture

In the category of "claims to fame nobody wants," the United States can now add "exporter of white supremacist ideology" to its repertoire. Super.

Russell Travers, acting director of the National Counterterrorism Center, made this claim in a briefing at The Washington Institute in Washington, D.C. "For almost two decades, the United States has pointed abroad at countries who are exporters of extreme Islamist ideology," Travers said. "We are now being seen as the exporter of white supremacist ideology. That's a reality with which we are going to have to deal."

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Between Alexa, Siri, and Google, artificial intelligence is quickly changing us and the way we live. We no longer have to get up to turn on the lights or set the thermostat, we can find the fastest route to work with a click, and, most importantly, tag our friends in pictures. But interacting with the world isn't the only thing AI is making easier – now we can use it save the world, too.

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