The neuroscientist behind Nintendo's hit "brain-training" games is joining forces with Toyota Motor Corp to develop a car to keep elderly drivers alert to prevent accidents, he said yesterday.
A research team from the Tohoku University will begin a study with Toyota in the aim of putting the car into practical use between 2015 and 2020, said Professor Ryuta Kawashima of the university's Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer.
The vehicle would be mounted with devices to "watch the driver's brain activity, automatic nerve reflexes, attentiveness and other mental and physical conditions," Kawashima said.
If the devices detect signs of slackening concentration, they would alert the driver to possible dangers through alarm sounds and other means, including the use of air conditioning to invigorate the driver's brain.
Kawashima chairs the university's newly launched study group for "mobility and smart aging," which also embraces engineering and other experts.
He said Japan's third-biggest carmaker Nissan Motor Co had also approached him for a study on vehicles for senior drivers, although no decision had been taken on any collaboration.
Almost a quarter of Japan's total population is aged 65 or older.
The number of people from Hong Kong applying for residency in Taiwan last year rose 41 percent from a year earlier to 5,858, National Immigration Agency statistics showed. The statistics also showed that 600 applications were filed by Hong Kong residents in the first quarter of this year — three times the number filed in the same period last year — with applicants apparently not deterred by the COVID-19 pandemic. Just one day after it was reported that the Chinese government plans to enact new national security laws in Hong Kong, inquiries regarding immigration to Taiwan grew 10-fold, a Hong Kong-based immigration
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