GammaPix just got a test run at the catastrophe simulation site Disaster City.
Disaster City is your one-stop for about every catastrophe you can think of. Train derailments, hurricanes, and other unfortunate happenings all get simulated at the Texas A&M site. As part of a test Wednesday, first responders test piloted something new: a smartphone app that detects radiation.
GammaPix, which sounds like one of those weird apps you accidentally find in the App Store and assume doesn’t work, is apparently a real thing for iPhone and Android that “can be used for the detection of radioactivity in everyday life such as exposure on airplanes, from medical patients or from contaminated products.” It works through a smartphone’s camera, so doesn’t require any external attachments. Chips inside of a smartphone’s built-in camera are sensitive to gamma rays; GammaPix uses its software to measure the impact of those rays, and give a picture of radioactivity in the area. The company says it works from up to 100 meters away.
Wednesday, at the Disaster City exercise, first responders measured radiation levels with the app, then practiced sending the data to officials through a wireless network. The idea’s that those officials will be able to make better-informed decisions more quickly with the data. Maybe one day civilians could download the app and be prepared to monitor radioactivity in an emergency, although they probably (hopefully) wouldn’t get much of a chance to use it.
Can I first just say how hyped I am about this new anti-bra study? According to French doctor Jean-Denis Rouillon, who studied 330 women’s breasts for 15 years(!), the whole shebang may be a waste of money and effort for many of us.
In his research, Rouillon found women who wore a bra regularly were actually more likely to experience breast sagging than women who did not. For most of the women, wearing a bra didn’t help lessen back pain, either.
I cannot tell you whether you need a bra, but I sure as hell know that I don’t need one, at least not for anything other than strategic nipple invisibility and, occasionally, a cleavage boost (I use the term “cleavage” very loosely here). I would go without a bra a whole lot more if it weren’t for this pesky idea that people should not be able to see the outline of my nipples through the fabric of my clothes. That this is seen as tacky or slutty or improper is one of my longtime laments, because the alternative is that women who do not otherwise need a bra at most times have to be uncomfortable for no reason other than propriety.
But I digress. Rouillon told France Culture last year that his work was inspired by a lack of previous studies on the medical effects or necessity of women wearing bras. Now that the results are in, he concluded that ”bras are a false necessity”.
“Medically, physiologically, anatomically – breasts gain no benefit from being denied gravity,” Rouillon said in a radio interview Wednesday. “On the contrary, they get saggier with a bra.”
For women who didn’t wear bras, ”on average their nipples lifted seven millimeters in one year in relation to the shoulders,” he added.
All of the women in Rouillon’s studies were 18 to 35 years old, however, and there’s no word on average breast size among participants. He points out somewhat weirdly that “it would be of no benefit to a 45-year-old mother to stop wearing a bra.”
But .. I can, right?