Good Luck to all the engineer's in this St.Patricks Day Final! Check out my latest work Photo's of a computational foot model :)
Student Bioengineer – DePuy Synthes Companies of Johnson and Johnson, Leeds. Production Associate – Intelesens, Belfast.
University of Leeds
Technology geek and coffee enthusiast keen to inspire the next generation of clever Engineers
I’m originally from Northern Ireland where I completed my first degree in Biomedical Engineering at the Ulster University. Since then I have moved to England where I am completing my MSc and PhD at the University of Leeds. I’m a big rugby fan (Ireland obviously) and before engineering I played for Ulster schools. Nowadays, In my spare time I like to tinker with gadgets, computers (I’m a fan of the Raspberry Pi and Arduino) and I like to keep up to date with startup companies in the technology space – favourite resources are TechCrunch and MedGadget. Aside from the technology interests, I enjoy a good TV series, holidays in the sun and coffee… I have many gadgets for making the perfect coffee…
Using medical images and computer programming to describe biomechanics of the foot and ankle.
My work, involves, firstly, a process called segmentation, where medical images can be transformed into a 3D virtual human on a computer. I then use gait analysis to take a real human in motion e.g. walking, squatting etc and feed this into my virtual model. This same method has been used in games such fifa and golf to mimic elite performers form and technique for game play. Using gait analysis on the the foot can provide information on the relative motion of the bones and from this biomechanics can be derived. I am specifically looking at differences between a high arched foot and flatfoot types.
In the final year of my BSc in Biomedical Engineering, I worked on manufacturing and characterising lithium doped calcium phospates for bone tissue engineering applications.
My Typical Day: Gait lab, coding and coffee
I like to rise around 7am and make myself a latte or cappuccino with fresh espresso – this is pretty much my psychological priming for the day. I’ll then make my way to the office typically around 8/9 and read up on news from sources at techcrunch or medgadet to stay current on new technology trends. From around 9am I will either be writing code, collecting/analysing gait data or reading relevant academic papers, this format will continue Monday to Thursday. Typically on a Friday I will do some experimenting with software development where I will learn a new skill or some new information from an adjacent technology sector and attempt to implement this in my PhD – it’s quite amazing just how helpful it can be to have a look at what other industries are doing – there’s a lot to be said for “connecting the dots.”
In the evenings I sometimes “read for fun” recently I have been reading The Inevitable by Kevin Kelly, The Rise of Robots by Martin Ford and A Life in Parts by Bryan Cranston.
What I'd do with the money
Create a virtual reality application of a virtual surgery from a surgeons perspective for schools and other educational purposes
I’d use my “experimental Friday’s” to develop a virtual reality application that could be used with google cardboard or samsung’s equivalent. The application could be used to simulate a hip replacement surgery where the user e.g. YOU would be the surgeon and you would go through the same surgical procedure required to implant a hip replacement.
Of course my VR application wouldn’t be limited to hip replacements – i’d be more inclined to run a poll to see what you, the public would like me to engineer!
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Irish, Geek, no-frills
What's the best thing you've done in your career?
Contributed to the development of medical instruments used in total knee replacements.
Were you ever in trouble at school?
Yes, when I was 15 I copied a person in a test. I got 20% deducted from my score and a detention – Turns out I got a higher mark than the person I copied (before the 20% deduction)… There’s a life lesson to be learned here…
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
I’m a fan of Klangkarussell (Sonnentanz), Bakermat (Living and One day),Robin Schulz (Prayer in C)
What's your favourite food?
Steak medium rare.
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Traveled across the United States in an RV from San Francisco to Miami.
Tell us a joke.
If Apple made a car, would it have Windows?