Creativity in Cabins Combats Coronavirus

Our last post, “Fighting Coronavirus,” mentioned using toothpicks to push elevator buttons, but the concept is being taken to another level in this elevator. As The National reports, this elevator in Dubai has introduced a toothpick-bottle-foam method, instead of a bottle of hand sanitizer.

While the “six-foot rule” of social distancing can’t be followed in most cabins, like the one here, it seems prudent to do what you can in such an enclosed space as a typical elevator cab. This Central Park Towers, DIFC elevator (also in Dubai) sports tape and footprint stickers to help give guidelines for a bit of separation.

The article also has another example of the toothpick method that confuses me a bit and a video of it in use in another elevator. So, head over there and stay safe!

Escalator Invention in the Running for LEGO League Championship

A recent article from Louisville, Kentucky’s WAVE 3 News is about a sharp team of fourth- through sixth-grade students in a local robotics program who aim to make escalators more accessible to those who can’t see well. The Good Vibrations invention uses a transducer to produce vibrations on escalator steps so riders can feel where they are.

Portland Christian School’s first LEGO League team “is causing a stir in the robotics world,” the source says. 11-year-old programmer Lydia Kratt inspired her five fellow members to help those like a friend of hers with disabilities overcome fears of escalators. They’re in the process of patenting the device for such public places as churches, airports and malls. They ranked third of 49 teams across Kentucky, earning an invitation to the national competitions. They also won first place for a LEGO League Global Innovation award, which recognizes the best project ideas most likely to be implemented.

The sight impaired traditionally use elevators for vertical transportation, where Braille is common. Is it a great idea for them to use escalators, too? Check out the video included in the link above to see how the device works and what the inventors have to say about it.