Urbana High School teen develops concussion identification with the Kinect


For our last post of the year it just seems right to highlight this very inspirational news article by Jeremy Bauer-Wolf of the Frederick News-Post.

Urbana High School teen developing his own company, test to help identify concussions


Image Credit: Staff photo by Graham Cullen Frederick News-Post

During a basketball practice while Eric Solender was in eighth grade, he had a serious concussion. After wobbling about the rest of the practice, the now 17-year-old Urbana High School student climbed into his father’s car, and fell unconscious.

“I jumped to get a rebound,” Solender said. “As I was coming down, another kid was jumping. So with the force of me coming down, and him jumping up, his nose slammed into the back of my head. I was just kind of dazed. I could almost feel my head bouncing, and with this immense pressure.”

Solender couldn’t remember the rest of 2012, except for the Van Halen concert he attended, Solender joked.

He couldn’t play video games without a splitting headache. He couldn’t function in school — the lights were too bright and he would fall asleep in class. A Frederick County Public Schools employee was assigned to teach him at his home a few times a week.

Solender has recovered, thanks to his doctors at Children’s National Medical Center. Now he wants to help others who suffered like he did. Using Microsoft Kinect, he has developed a concussion test that he hopes will enter the clinical sector, for doctors and home use.

The Kinect, developed by Microsoft, functions as a webcam of sorts, with voice recognition, and is used in gaming. The device can gauge points on the body in such great detail, the Kinect can identify when a person tilts his or her feet.

For his project, Solender borrowed questions from a test he took when he was concussed. Some ask the user to measure their motor skills. A person with a concussion, for example, will have difficulty touching his finger to his nose. Solender wrote code that can detect when the finger makes contact with the nose.

Project Information URL: http://www.fredericknewspost.com/news/education/learning_and_programs/urbana-high-school-teen-developing-his-own-company-test-to/article_a0e334ce-9255-5bca-bf4e-398b681f612f.html


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