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There are so many data driven apps and technologies out there today, but most of them are geared towards, business analytics or marketing research. What if we could take these programs and applications and modify them to meet personal needs?

This is what Simon Wheatcroft did to overcome his inability to see and return to the hobbies he loves such as running. When someone is blind it is difficult enough to navigate around the house let alone outside, which is what makes Simon Wheatcroft so impressive. He is using a fitness tracking app called RunKeeper to learn the terrain of the neighborhood around him. By setting audio markers through the app, it lets him know where to watch out for telephone poles or protruding bushes as he navigates himself through a cognitive map.

It is incredible to think that an average man can not only learn to overcome his inability to see, but to have the innovation to use a fitness app to do it is amazing! Just imagine what we could do for people with disabilities if we could start using all of the data technology out there to create new tools. Maybe physical therapists could use fitness trackers to monitor their patients’ progress when doing exercise at home. Doctors could potentially receive  information about a patient’s vitals after being discharged from an open heart surgery.

The options are limitless if we learn how to use these applications in a new way. Hopefully entrepreneurs will take this readily available technology and use it in a way that will benefit those who need it most!

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