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Palo Alto High School
Palo Alto, Calif.
Head-mounted Remote Control for Quadriplegics

  • Henry Evans, a quadriplegic and former colleague of InvenTeam mentor Chris Tacklind, inspired development of the InvenTeam's "Laser Finger."

  • Attached to the user's hat or glasses by magnets, the remote control operates through a solar cell, which recognizes the pulsing laser and feeds information into a tiny computer, allowing the user to turn on a light or the television.

  • The InvenTeam was able to develop the Laser Finger with the support of the Tech Shop, OK International, Microchip, and SolidWorks.

  • "It only requires the caregiver to put on my glasses. From there on I do everything. In fact, I can now switch on the light across the room faster than an able-bodied person, with no help. It restores a small part of my independence. As a bonus, the laser cost tens of dollars instead of thousands, so you don't need insurance to get it," said Evans.