Research Features – Issue 144: mini-films, tiny frogs, and driving games

Your brand new, rebooted Research Features continues to bring you the best and most fascinating articles on cutting-edge studies into everything from treefrogs to artificial neural networks. We also see research into gamification as a method to teach young drivers better fuel economy, as well as a study into the possibly surprising factors that can have an impact on mini-film advertising. Craig Drown, founder of the mSupply Foundation, talks to us about his work that supports low- and middle-income countries to manage their health supply chains through providing open-source software and training.


Not so fast and furious! Gamification boosts eco-driving in young drivers

Using gamification the process of using gaming concepts like points and leadership tables to teach younger road users to drive sustainably. This not only helps the planet by reducing the amount of greenhouse gas emissions, but also results in substantial savings in travel costs for young people.

Mini-film advertising: The impact of brand cues and loneliness

Marketing has shifted in recent years as a result of the internet, leading to a growth in mini-film advertising. This is a form of marketing that is attractive to brands who want a cost-effective alternative to traditional advertising. Mini-films are usually 310 minutes long, and contain little reference to the brand. This study looks at how different factors such as loneliness or brand cue placement can impact the effectiveness of mini-film advertising.

Can we make a long-term home for farm-loving treefrogs?

A long-term study into rare and endangered treefrogs in the Yellow River basin who have adopted traditionally managed rice paddies as their new homes – but these are now in danger. Farming methods are changing, drainage ditches are being covered over, and land use is shifting more towards residential developments. What does this mean for these brightly coloured amphibians?

Professor Amaël Borzée at Nanjing Forestry University is working to protect critically endangered treefrogs.
Dryophytes immaculatus, commonly known as the Chinese Immaculate treefrog, is functionally extinct in parts of Jiangsu.

Using artificial neural networks to understand the human brain

Although there is no cure for Alzhemeir’s disease, there are clinical strategies that can help manage and prevent the disease from developing. This relies on early diagnosis, which is unfortunately costly, impractical, and unethical to carry out on a scale large enough to screen large populations for the disease. However, new research indicates that mass screenings could use AI and deep neural networks to predict the risk of dementia by using readily available clinical information.

mSupply Foundation: Ethical leaders in open-source healthcare solutions

An interview with Craig Drown about his work in a not-for-profit foundation, and his commitment to making open-source software that can be used and modified by anyone. By producing this software, the foundation helps developing nations to manage health supply chains and bridge the global healthcare equality gap.

Local partner in Myanmar conducting training.


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