Road signs have been a blessing to many drivers, acting as a quick guide away from danger or to the nearest gas stations. Now researchers in France have come up with an iconic language of their own to help lead doctors to the right drug prescription. Jean-Baptiste Lamy and his colleagues at the University of Paris hope the VCM (Visulaisation des Connaissances Médicales) icon system will help lessen prescribing errors. Something often traced to restraints on physicians' time and resources that prevent them from easily looking up or remembering drug properties. With VCM, doctors can see the risks associated with any given drug at a glance.
The eleven physicians who tested the system as part of a study published in BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making, learned VCM in a matter of hours. Once they had it down, doctors understood VCM questions almost twice as fast and several percentage points more accurately than text.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.