"Lonely Robo": Robotic Word Search Solving System;How Social and Commercial Imperatives Compromise the Safety of U.S. Medical and Health Technology

Wolfe, Sean, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Elliott, Travis, EN-STS Dept, University of Virginia
Powell, Harry, EN-Elec/Computer Engr Dept, University of Virginia
Norton, Peter, EN-Engineering and Society, University of Virginia

The success of medical technology depends both on its technical efficacacy and on its application in practice.
The research team developed an automated system that detects, parses, and solves printed word-search puzzles as a demonstration of multidisciplinary engineering projects that are essential in applications such as robotic surgery. Our team sketched major components before implementation and tested them. We deployed a “divide and conquer” strategy to distribute the work. The resulting system solved several word-search puzzles, demonstrating the value of techniques such as optical character recognition and 3D printing.
In the U.S. commercial imperatives sometimes compromise the safety of medical technology. A misperception of a medical device’s capabilities can be catastrophic. Marketing teams and media sometimes exaggerate the capabilities of medical technology. Marketing claims and media reports are sometimes inconsistent with medical research findings, indicating that medical technology may be misused or overused, at high cost and to the detriment of patient health.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
Computer Vision, 3D Printing, Robotics, False Advertising, Medical Technology, MedTech, United States, Multidisciplinary Engineering, Circuit Design, Embedded Systems

School of Engineering and Applied Science
Bachelor of Computer Engineering
Technical Advisor: Harry Powell
STS Advisors: Sean Elliott, Peter Norton
Technical Team Members: Wade Hisiro, Joshua Laney, Nicholas Mohammed, Christopher Truong

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