Tag Archives: illness

Can’t get to school? No problem!

Nelson Mandela once said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” But what about those who are unable to receive an education due to circumstances such as health issues?

VGo has the answer to that question.

VGo utilizes the most relevant technology advances of the past years to allow individuals to represent themselves in a different location as if they were really there. With VGo, an individual who is unable to physically be at their desired location can see, talk, hear, and interact with those around them through the use of a small robot. However, this is more than just a video chat – VGo is different than traditional solutions, such as Skype, because it stands at four feet tall, weighs 18 pounds, is operated by a remote control, and is wireless. These features allow users of VGo to be completely independent of the people in their desired location.

In addition, VGo is also cost-effective when compared to other robotic programs. The robot currently costs around $6000 to purchase, with an additional $100 in monthly fees. VGo collaborates with Verizon to utilize 4G LTE for optimum internet speed and connection.

Devon Carrow, courtesy of Sun Journal

Devon Carrow, courtesy of Sun Journal

The Verizon Foundation views the VGo “telepresence” robots as an opportunity to explore the innovative uses of their technology.

The Sun Journal reports that Devon Carrow, 7, has used VGo as a way to attend school when he would otherwise be unable.

Devon uses his VGo in order to still attend his classes in West Seneca, NY, because the seven year-old suffers from life-threatening allergies that do not allow him to attend school. Devon doesn’t understand all of the fuss over the robot because, according to him, “[VGo is] so cool because it’s like playing a game on the computer.” With VGo, Devon has been able to attend school for the first time, but there is something else that is remarkable about his story – since his classmates have grown up in a world full of technology, it is barely acknowledged that he is not physically there.

In addition, NBC Today reports that Lyndon Baty, 15, has also utilized VGo to attend public school.

Lyndon Baty, courtesy of TODAY.com

Lyndon Baty, courtesy of TODAY.com

Prior to receiving his VGo, Lyndon was initially unable to go to school because of his kidney disease, which caused the deterioration of his immune system. Not only did this make him unable to go to school, but it also took away his social life too. “I had no friends to talk to, nobody was there for me,” Lyndon told NBC. Now all of that has changed, and because of VGo, he has made real friends and no longer feels lonely. 

Lyndon’s only complaint? “I’m always having to be someone in the middle of the hallways to please open the door,” he said. “I don’t have any arms!”

With technology like VGo, incidences that were once deemed impossible are no longer an obstacle.

Other potential uses for the VGo could include:

  • Bringing teachers and tutors to needy schools
  • Allowing doctors to consult patients and workers in the office while traveling
  • Keeping things running smoothly for businesses that have more than one location

Do you have any ideas that the VGo could be used for?

We’d love to hear your opinion!

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