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Prepare for Happy Tears: 5 Times Tech Improved People's Lives

Prepare for Happy Tears: 5 Times Tech Improved People's Lives
Image credit: Sollina Images | Getty Images
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Technology has a myriad of uses and capabilities. As innovations become more common in everyday life, offering a new and easier way of doing things, it’s not just smartphone reminders that are making a difference in people's lives.

In cases such as these examples, technology significantly improved lives.

1. I see you, mommy.

Image credit: Carson's GoFundMe page

Like any rambunctious 7-year-old, Carson Watson loves adventures and to play the piano. However, his ability to do so was limited because of an eye condition -- bilateral optic nerve hypoplasia -- that limited his eyesight. He could only see things at close range in the size of pinhole with the corner of his right eye.

However, new tech glasses, invented by eSight eyewear, changed that. Once he tried on the invention, which makes things appear 14 times larger, he instantly saw his mother across the room -- something he’d never been able to do before.

“I see you, Mommy, right there!” he said, according to a report from NBC4i Columbus.  

Even though they’re bogged down by a mountainous amount of medical bills, raising the money for the glasses was “a no brainer,” said his mother, Melissa. The goal was to raise the $15,000 in funds before he goes back to school in September. The GoFundMe page has already raised $16,000.

2. Will you marry me?

Image credit: Breaking NEWS | Youtube

It’s not every day an adult hears for the first time in his or her life.

But for Andrea Diaz, this occasion was doubly happy after she got a cochlear implant. Little did she know her boyfriend, Kevin Peakman, was waiting for the doctor to give him the all clear as he bent down on one knee behind Diaz and opened a tiny box.

“I wanted to make one of the first things that you hear is me asking you to marry me,” he told Good News Network. 

3. That’s my dad!

Sometimes, all you need is to see the reaction on someone’s face to know what they’re thinking.

Take, for instance, the look on 3-year-old Grayson’s face the first time he hears his dad say he loves him.

It’s OK, grab a tissue or two if you need it. It was an emotional day for his dad, Len Clamp, too.

“I've never seen a look like that today," Clamp said in a UNC Health Care press release. "I mean, he looked deep into my eyes. He was hearing my voice for the first time. It was phenomenal."

Grayson Clamp was born without cochlear nerves, rendering him deaf. He was the first to receive an auditory brainstem implant, the first-of-its-kind surgery in the U.S., as part of an FDA clinical trial. The device was originally used for people with auditory nerve tumors, but thanks to the results with Grayson, is now considered to help restore children’s hearing, as well.

4. I think and then I walk.

Image credit: Brain Computer Interface Lab | UCI

Adam Fitz, a 29-year-old from California, never thought he would walk again after a motorcycle accident left him paralyzed.

But UC Irvine’s research lab had different plans, using his thoughts to create a computer algorithm that would help him walk again, bypassing his damaged spinal cord to help fire the muscles in his legs. As a result, Fitz was able to walk with his own legs for a brief period of time.

It was the first time a paraplegic was able to walk through brain control.

5. A helping hand.

Sophia Howard, a third grader from Michigan, was born without a hand. Though her parents kept trying to get her to play sports such as soccer, the little girl was determined to play softball. She’s played the sport for three years, but thanks to AxisLab 3D and its printers, it’ll be the first season she’s played with both hands.

Aaron Brown, the owner of AxisLab, is a volunteer for e-NABLE and has created 3-D printed hands for people all over the world, including little Sophia.

The hand only cost Brown about $40 to make, but we bet it's priceless for Sophia.

Edition: October 2016

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