Blood Sugar Levels Will Not Work. What about Death?

November 17, 2018

Google, as I recall, wanted to smash through medical barriers. When the contact lens thing surfaced at Microsoft with inputs from Babak Parviz, I figured Google knew something Microsoft did not. I read “Alphabet Stops Its Project to Create a Glucose-Measuring Contact Lens for Diabetes Patients” and learned:

Verily, Alphabet‘s life sciences arm, has paused work on its so-called “smart lens” program, which was aiming to put tiny sensors on contact lenses to measure blood sugar levels in tears.

Parviz, one of the wizards responsible for Google Glass (that’s a story as well) is now at Amazon. The contact lens thing is a goner.

That happens. But it raises a question in my mind:

If Google can’t make blood sugar monitoring work, what’s that say about the company’s goal of solving death?

High school science club project? Maybe. Death may be a more difficult problem, but it might spark fascinating ad sales.

Stephen E Arnold, November 17, 2018


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