Up until now, doctors fighting highly contagious diseases like Ebola have had to forgo their gadgets for pen and paper. But Google, at the request of the French organization Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders), has developed an alternative: A tablet enclosed in polycarbonate, which can be soaked in chlorine for decontamination. It communicates with a battery-powered server outside of high-risk zones, allowing doctors to save and retrieve patient records easily. Altogether, it's a rather elegant solution for getting around typically restrictive biohazard restrictions. The system's usefulness goes far beyond Ebola, as well: it could be easily deployed to help fight future disease outbreaks. Google and Médecins Sans Frontières are also working to open source the project, which should make it easy for others to adapt it to their needs.
[Photo credit: Médecins Sans Frontières]