Drones and defibrillators: Saving minutes to save lives

Cardiovascular disease, a term for a number of disorders of the heart and blood vessels, is a serious and steadily growing threat to global health, causing even more deaths every year than cancer. In the U.S. alone, nearly 660,000 people, or 1 in 4, die of heart disease annually. In particular, cardiovascular disease can lead to cardiac arrest, a serious condition in which the heart suddenly stops beating. One of the most effective methods of treatment for cardiac arrest is an automated external defibrillator, which can not only correct an episode of arrhythmia, or irregular heartbeat, but can restore the…

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Who’s flying the plane? The future of air travel and transportation

Picture it, you look up to the sky at an airspace populated by both manned and unmanned aircraft of all shapes and sizes, delivering goods and people across the country, from the largest cities to the most rural locations. Sounds like the backdrop to a great sci fi movie set far in the future right? Well, not exactly. Earlier this year, NASA outlined an Advanced Air Mobility or (AAM) mission to support the safe development of air transportation systems within emerging aviation markets (such as automated aircraft) to navigate existing airspace as well as provide extended reach and service to…

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Providing new insight on rideshares and sexual assault rates

On-demand ridesha­res like Uber and Lyft are now as commonplace an option for getting where we need to go as cabs, buses and trains, and arguably more accessible. However, as rideshares have increased in popularity, so to have concerns over passenger safety, as we’ve seen extensive media coverage over the past several years of driver sexual misconduct and assault, as well as criticism of these top rideshare companies for failing to conduct adequate background checks and other safety protocols. And while recently, Uber and Lyft have taken steps to better ensure rider safety, to include partnering to create a shared…

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Optimizing transportation scheduling for a win, win, win situation for all

When the first ride-share companies launched more than a decade ago, it completely transformed our options for traveling from place to place. Gone were the days of hailing a cab from the side of the street, now your ride home, to work, or anywhere you need to go is just the click of a mobile app away. But does that mean that more traditional methods of transportation, like buses, trains and cabs, have become a thing of the past? How are they successfully coexisting in the same space, with popular rideshares like Uber and Lyft, and is there even a…

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How airlines are still flying high during the pandemic

The COVID-19 impact on airlines has been profound, with more than a 50% decrease in the volume of air passengers over the past year. Last year, in the early days of the pandemic, I shared an episode featuring Arnie Barnett with MIT in which we discussed how by leaving the middle seats on airplanes open, and only filling windows and aisles, the chance of contracting the coronavirus during a flight could be significantly reduced. Now, joining me for this episode to discuss additional ways airlines have pivoted and adapted to the challenges of the pandemic is Laurie Garrow. Laurie is…

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Tackling the holiday rush at UPS

In the few short weeks between Thanksgiving and the New Year, the number of packages processed, transported and delivered by UPS will more than double to meet the demand of holiday gift giving! Joining us to provide a behind the scenes look at the busiest time of year for UPS is Ranganath Nuggehalli, principal scientist at UPS, to talk about how O.R. helps make the holidays merry!

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