Covid-19 News Science

Inventions born out of a pandemic

Extraordinary times call for extraordinary solutions, none more than these inventions.

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown humans our sternest challenge yet. While time will tell the degree to which this challenge shapes tomorrow, evidence suggests the one thing the pandemic could not put down is human ingenuity. In fact, the average person has joined the league of scientists, engineers and designers worldwide making inventions to outdo the crisis.

You’ve heard of contact tracing apps, designer masks, mobile ventilators, online study and the likes. Now make way for the truly out-of-the-box.

The party comes to VR

The virtual party is going another place. Mov over Zoom. A Virtual Reality business in Washington DC that offers standard VR experiences like escape rooms, play arenas, multi-player games and VR tours is now playing party planner. VR Zone DC offers a social distancing party package for up to 8 people to talk, party and play games in VR destinations that include a treehouse and a ski lounge. VR headsets can be received via contactless delivery along with sanitising wipes and masks. Let the party begin.

The don’t-touch-your-mouth device

Here’s a nice touch to the don’t touch routine. Seattle based Slightly Robot makes wristbands. Nothing new about that. Then, they made a few tweaks to their existing line of products to create a smart wristband that vibrates every time you touch your face, a useful and practical technology for these times. The device named Immutouch has received its fair share of media coverage and now makes it to Deetox for its genuine out-of-the-box application.

The face mask with a mouth

Masks are widely included in the list of essentials for home and outside, no matter what part of the world you live. Non-medical grade masks may not be lifesavers, but they certainly offer primary protection and peace of mind, except when you eventually begin to dine out in the new normal. Enter mask that allows the wearer to open and close an opening on the mouth. Developed by Avtipus Patents and Inventions, the contraption is operated by a remote control that opens the mechanical mouth part at the touch of a button. Stay safe when you eat out, and remember to shut the mouth when not in use!

Image: Amir Cohen / Reuters

The isolation ward on wheels

Indian Railways has converted idle train coaches into COVID-19 isolation wards to meet the increasing demand for isolation beds at hospitals. Going from India’s transportation lifeline to makeshift health facility, India’s railway authorities have presented a bright example of local insight for a global crisis. The railway coaches can serve locally when idle and deployed to places where healthcare infrastructure is limited.

The hands-free door?

Welshman Wyn Griffith has invented a hands-free door pull, to stop people having to touch door handles and minimise the risk of infection. The handle has a universal design and can be attached to any door. What’s more, he made the design available on the Grabcad Community website for anyone to download freely and create with a 3D printer. Thank you, Mr. Griffith, for your invention and your selflessness.

Image: Wyn Griffith via

History tells us that behind every invention is a necessity. And behind every invention is a triumph of the human mind over calamities that until then remained unconquered. The make-do attitude is a testament to human adaptability; the can-do a sign of our ingenuity.

For more reading about taking precautions in times of COVID-19, see disinfecting your home, your car and your devices.

By Romeo Coutinho

Rationalist, truth seeker, full time writer, part time dreamer.

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