Revolutionizing Medical Tech With Dollar-Store Devices

Maverick MIT inventor Jose Gomez-Marquez has seen the future of medical tech in the developing world: It's made of Lego bricks, cheap cell phones and dollar-store finds.

On a summer afternoon, Jose Gomez-Marquez stands in the middle of a Family Dollar store, loading up his basket with colorful plastic toys. Down the aisle, two of his MIT students, Valentina Chamorro and Madeline Aby, are rummaging through kitchen supplies, deciding whether to buy an acrylic toothpick holder. “Remember, it’s only a dollar,” Gomez-Marquez says. “You might not know what you’re going to use it for now, but it’ll cost more than a dollar for us to c...

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