What would you do with your time if you knew how many days you had left to live? Would you even want to know how long you had left? For one New Zealand scientist, the answer is a resounding “yes,” reports Bloomberg.
Ray Avery made his riches as a scientist in the pharmaceutical industry, but now works out of his garage building low-cost medical devices that can potentially save millions of lives. The prolific inventor and scientist says he’s so dedicated to his work because he’s calculated exactly how many days he has left to live: 4,795, or a little over 13 years left. And he doesn’t want to waste a minute of his remaining time.
“Failure is really just for people who are unprepared,” Avery said. “You don’t waste time on things that aren’t going to get you to where you need to go.” Avery says he calculated his remaining days using an algorithm that took into effect his age, the average life span for people born in his time, the foods he consumes, and more.
Part of not wasting his time involves taking clothing cues from Steve Jobs. He doesn’t spend time on deciding what to wear and instead has simple white outfits for summer and black outfits for winter. He’s instead putting that time saved to creating medical devices that help the world’s neediest and most vulnerable children.
Avery’s latest device is the Life Pod, a $2,000 incubator for babies designed for communities who can’t afford the average incubator, which costs $40,000. Avery is also working on a way to take the “chicken slurry” —the leftover chicken bits that fast-food restaurants like KFC doesn’t use—to make a highly nutritional supplement for babies that he says could save millions of lives in the developing world.
What better way to spend your remaining 4,795 than helping others?