Monday, March 28, 2011

Computing and a Toothbrush?

I was hunting for something quite different (and far more serious) when I found this unusual toothbrush and it was just too intriguing to pass up. There exists this computer scientist and inventor who got into toothbrushes (among other things). I just had to read on. The CS inventor, Richard Trocino, lives in Austin, Texas one of my favorite cities and former home. That clinched it. My textbook writing project was temporarily diverted.

This toothbrush is pretty slick if you are into gadgets. A gift for the person who has it all (make a note on your holiday or birthday list). Called the OHSO, it is a refillable toothbrush with an oxygen intrusion prevention setup so that the toothpaste will never gum up (so go the marketing materials). You can put your favorite toothpaste in - I wonder if that includes a homeopathic paste made from baking soda and water."Suction technology" makes it easy to fill. That makes me want to see just how much sucking is done and what else could get sucked in.

It self dispenses in different ways depending upon if you twist the little knob or if you tilt it a certain way. There is a little window where you can peer in at the stuff to see how much paste is left. No leaking, airtight all around and with replaceable parts. I am dying to play with one of these.

I have read everything I can find and I don't see where computing technology comes into the OHSO. Unless there is a little microchip hidden in there somewhere. But you'd think they'd advertise it. I would like to take it apart and find out.

Maybe the computer science only comes in via the fact that they don't do formal advertising but rely on word of mouth and social media to generate sales.

Is this a socially useful device? There are testimonials on the site from business travelers to active duty military personnel and everyone in between swearing how much they love this toothbrush.  Clean teeth, the prevention of cavities and recessing gum lines are definitely a good thing. Keeping one's teeth is a good thing. There is something perhaps "green" in a toothbrush that might last for years. I can't tell if it is made primarily from plastic or metal. That would add or subtract from the beneficial environmental aspects. But you have to be the judge on this one.

What I really want is to approach it as a technological device and test it in every way possible, including taking it apart and putting it back together. I know I could put my research design skills to work on coming up with some very creative experiments.

Hopefully I would have better luck than the time back in my 20s when out of curiosity I took the front passenger door off my 1969 Dodge Dart and couldn't put it back on.  (the door was too heavy - those wonderful cars were tanks) I drove 20+ miles down the highway at full highway speeds without a door in order to find another pair of arms. But a toothbrush is a far cry from a solid steel car door. What could possibly go wrong? There is that suction aspect to consider I suppose. Unlike a garbage disposal however I wouldn't have to stick my hand into a dark place full of nasty sharp blades.

But really, the scientist in me hears about something this unusual and drives me to want to take an OHSO toothbrush and put it through some serious paces. Then I can find out or infer if computing plays a role in the device and if the device is socially beneficial.

If someone will provide me an OHSO I promise to take it traveling on business, into the mountains on retreat, to the dentist (just have to see what she'd say about this) and in fact I'd stick it in my pocket, take it everywhere, and brush at random intervals wherever I happened to be. I might even alternate between randomness and statistically planned brushing events.

In between taking it apart  and putting it back together.

I'll devote the full range of my assessment and evaluator experience to the task.

How about it OHSO - want to send me one? Consider it free product testing.

No comments:

Post a Comment