Three years with magnetic implants

I always seem to remember a few days after... but the 22nd of this December marked the three year anniversary since I had tiny neodymium magnets implanted into the middle and ring fingers of my left hand in my attempt to explore and develop a new type of human-machine interface for my masters degree work.

Unlike the previous years which were uneventful, this year, a few months ago, I developed some discomfort and slight pain in my ring finger when I accidently applied too much sharp pressure on the area and upset the implant. It was the first time in three years that I had any sort of trouble from the implant. Luckily the internal wounds healed in a few days and the pain subsided. Below is an X-ray image of the implant I got done a few months ago and it looks like it is still safely tucked in where it was originally placed!

At the beginning of this year, I had set out to develop a smaller, less intrusive version of the external interface I had developed earlier with the goal of exploring the effects of wearing the interface for an extended period of time - 24 hours a day 7 days a week for 3 months. I did get around to hacking up a tiny interface package that I can wear as a ring on my finger. Sadly, for too many excuses and what not, I didn't get around to actually getting on with that bit of research.

So, here's to me actually getting on with wearing the new interface for three months beginning 2012. Fingers crossed!

X-ray image of the ring finger from a few months ago.

New, smaller, ring-sized external interface.

Tech meet-ups and Hackathon

There has been an interesting meet-up for techies every Saturday for the past several weeks. The meet-ups were a brilliant initiative of the great guys at Limopalm with support from Leaf Technology (thanks guys!). The meet-ups usually loosely center around a topic chosen beforehand and are organised and publicized on Facebook. The last meet-up, on 10th December was on the topic "Discussing Web Development Issues" while previous meet-ups have discussed things ranging from software development methodologies to noSQL databases.

Anyway, at the very first meetup, I took the opportunity of having a bunch of developers in one room to propose something I've had in mind for quite a while - a Hackathon event in the Maldives. Everyone seems to be interested in seeing what they can come up with in such an event. The current ideas are to hold the event sometime in February 2012, away from Male' in a mostly isolated place, where the participating individuals or teams will be given 24-48 hours to work on their project. Winners will be chosen from among different categories - commercial-related, community-related, public vote etc. Nothing is set in stone yet and discussions are ongoing at the meet-ups and on the Hackathon group on Facebook.

Today is a Saturday and there will be a meet-up at 5pm at Leaf Technology (M. Chaandhaneege, 4th floor). Today's meetup will be specifically on discussing and planning the hackathon event. If you are in the computer/software industry and are interested, drop-in! :-)

Total Lunar Eclipse on 10th December visible in the Maldives

There will be a total Lunar eclipse that will be visible in the Maldives taking place tomorrow, 10 December 2011. The eclipse starts at 4:34 PM, reaches mid eclipse at 7:32 PM and ends at 10:30 PM. The total phase begins at 7:06 PM and ends at 7:57 PM, which allows us to catch the eclipse not long after the sunsets at 5:54 PM.

This eclipse is reported to be not central - meaning the Moon does not pass through the center of the Earth's shadow. Hence, there will be a nice gradient visible on the Moon, with one side appearing darker and the opposite side lighter even during the total phase.

Maldives will not be seeing another Lunar eclipse until 28 November 2012, when a penumbral eclipse occurs starting at 5:15 PM. The next earliest total Lunar eclipse visible in the Maldives occurs 8 October 2014.