This Week in STEM – June 27, 2019

This Week in STEM – June 27, 2019

Blog Contributed by Dr. Christopher Murphy, Chief Strategic Growth & Communications Officer for Concept Schools, @DrChrisMurphy 

Could a tattoo help you stay healthy?

Carson Bruns | TEDxMileHigh

Can we make tattoos both beautiful and functional? Nanotechnologist Carson Bruns shares his work creating high-tech tattoos that react to their environment — like color-changing ink that can tell you when you’re getting a sunburn — and shows exciting ways they can deliver real-time information about our health.

Personally, as one of the more than 5 million Americans who annually seeks treatment for preventable skin cancers costing in excess of $5 billion, I’m in. Sign me up for the UV-reactive tattoo to help me gauge when it’s best to reapply sunscreen!

Meet the 11-year old CEO trying to teacher 1 billion kids to code

Yahoo! Finance

What were you doing at 11 years old? Going to school? Playing with friends? Samaira Mehta does that too — but she’s also is the CEO of her own company.

Samaira is the creator of CoderBunnyz, board games to help teach kids how to code. The company has sold about 15,000 games, which retail on Amazon for about $35, and has revenues of a little over $600,000 — not bad for a middle schooler.

Samaira tells Yahoo Finance her biggest challenge while developing CoderBunnyz was getting people to take her seriously. “I’m only 11, but when I started, I was only 6 or 7. So people thought that because I’m so young, I am not able to accomplish great things.”

If you’re wondering how she juggles schoolwork, friends and her business, Samaira tells (Yahoo Finance), “It does get a little hard sometimes, but time expands to accommodate your passions and priorities, if you really love what you do.”

Given how far she’s come for such a young age, you may not be surprised to hear entrepreneurship is not her only ambition. “I want to become President of America when I’m a little older. This position could give me a higher voice to do even greater things for our country, to accomplish so much more. You know, it’s just another thing I want to pursue in the future.”

The Heart of a Swimmer vs. the Heart of a Runner

New York Times

Do world-class swimmers’ hearts function differently than the hearts of elite runners?

A new study finds that the answer may be yes, and the differences, although slight, could be telling and consequential, even for those of us who swim or run at a much less lofty level. 

Cardiologists and exercise scientists already know that regular exercise changes the look and workings of the human heart. The left ventricle, in particular, alters with exercise. This chamber of the heart receives oxygen-rich blood from the lungs and pumps it out to the rest of the body, using a rather strenuous twisting and unspooling motion, as if the ventricle were a sponge being wrung out before springing back into shape.

Exercise, especially aerobic exercise, requires that considerable oxygen be delivered to working muscles, placing high demands on the left ventricle. In response, this part of the heart in athletes typically becomes larger and stronger than in sedentary people and functions more efficiently, filling with blood a little earlier and more fully and untwisting with each heartbeat a bit more rapidly, allowing the heart to pump more blood more quickly.