How old are your ears?

Deep down we all know we shouldn’t crank our music or listen to headphones with the volume really high, but we still do. And if we’ve ever wondered if years of hard rock have done any serious damage, this website provides an easy way to find out. 

Over time what’s known as hair cells in our ears are slowly damaged by constant use. And not just by loud music either, from everyday wear and tear too. The hair cells closest to our ear canal are the ones responsible for detecting higher frequencies, and they’re usually the first to go. So we can get an approximate idea of how much hearing we’ve already lost by listening to various high frequencies.

Headphones are definitely recommended here since our laptop’s or tablet’s speakers probably don’t have the highest fidelity. And don’t worry, there are no failures on this test, just a heap of guilt for not turning down our music back when our parents told us too.

ps: turning the volume up does not change anything and won’t help your hair cells 😉

ICRA 2014

2014 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA)


The 2014 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) will be held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, Hong Kong, China, from May 31 to June 5, 2014. Hong Kong, situated on China’s south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbor. Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated areas in the world, and serves as the one of the busiest gateway between the east and west. The conference theme is “Robotics and Automation: Technologies Enabling New Economic Growth” reflecting the growing spectrum and recent developments in robotics and automation around the world.

Important Dates

  • August 15, 2013:                 Proposals for organized/special sessions
  • September 15, 2013:            Submission of full-length papers and videos
  • September 15, 2013:            Proposals for tutorials/workshops
  • January 15, 2014:                  Notification of paper and video acceptance

General Chair : Ning Xi, Michigan State University, USA

Program Chair : William R. Hamel, University of Tennessee, USA

Sponsor : IEEE Robotics and Automation Society

submitPaper Submission : all papers submitted to ICRA 2014 undergo a peer-review process. A manuscript will be reviewed by at least two reviewers, who will give detailed comments and – if the submission gets accepted – the authors submit a revised (“camera-ready”) version that takes into account this feedback. The review process is managed by the ICRA Conference Review Board (ICRB). All papers are reviewed using a single-blind review process: authors declare their names and affiliations in the manuscript for the reviewers to see, but reviewers do not know each other’s identities, nor do the authors receive information about who has reviewed their manuscript. A selected number of papers will be carefully chosen by the program committee for interactive presentation, in addition to a brief talk during a regular session. For the first submission, a manuscript can be of 6-8 pages. For the final submission, a manuscript should be of 6 pages, with 2 additional pages allowed but at an extra charge. Optional Multimedia materials (e.g. videos, enhanced pictures, audio files, experimental dataset, etc. – all limited to three minutes duration) can be added to supplement contributed papers.

Knee Surgery… there’s an app for that!


Nowadays “there’s an app for that” could be the 11th Commandment … there is a bunch of apps for everything, even for the most stupid daily activities.

vks1A friend of mine told me to have a look at this one: Virtual Knee Surgery. It is a very realistic game that follows all the basic steps of a Total Knee Replacement surgery. The user is invited to interact with the surgeon in order to perform the necessary operations.

After living this experience in a real operating room, personally I’ve found this app a really nice and clear explanation 🙂 If you want to spend ten minutes to learn the basics of TKR, I definitely can say it’s worth it!