Here's how Nobuhiro Takahashi and the University of Electro-Communications describe this project: "'SHIRI' is a buttocks humanoid robot that expresses various emotions with organic movement of the artificial muscles." It's designed to respond to slaps, caresses, and finger-pokes. It is super weird.
This is one of the most inspiring stories we've ever seen: Claire Lomas of the U.K. was paralyzed from the chest down in a horse-riding accident five years ago. Yet today, she accomplished something difficult for anyone: she finished the London Marathon. It took 16 days and one impressive bionic exoskeleton, but she did it. Watch the video and try not to tear up a little, I dare you.
We cover biomedical science and engineering a lot, and sometimes I get to wondering: if I was rebuilding my own flimsy, flesh-based body--presumably because I'd had some ghastly dismembering, eviscerating accident--and replacing my limbs, joints, senses, and organs with the most futuristic, top-of-the-line bionics, what would I get? Would I want an artificial lower leg that sprinters use in Olympic-level races, or a motorized leg that can climb a slope as well as a natural leg? I gathered a list of 15 bionic body parts that I'd want to wear, or have installed.
Click to launch a tour of the body parts I'd want in the event of an accident.
A Serb living in Austria has elected to have his hand amputated so that he can be fitted with a working bionic limb. The 26-year-old Milo’s biological hand was intact but useless, as a nerve injury stemming from a motorcycle accident ten years ago robbed him of feeling and movement in that extremity. Now, an Austrian doctor--not without controversy--has amputated Milo’s hand and is replacing it with a robotic version that responds to nerve signals in his forearm.
Microchips restore sight in patients with degenerative vision loss
By Katherine BagleyPosted 03.14.2011 at 3:03 pm 0 Comments
More than 100,000 Americans have suffered significant vision loss from retinitis pigmentosa, a genetic disorder that is the most common cause of childhood blindness. Now a team of German researchers, led by neuroophthalmologist Eberhart Zrenner of the University of Tubingen, has developed a microchip that can restore their sight. Within days of receiving the implant, patients can see geometric patterns and letters. Over time, some have developed the ability to tell a fork from a spoon, identify shades of gray, read words, and even detect emotion on people's faces.
The Six Million Dollar Man’s robotic arm worked as seamlessly as his natural one. But in the real world, robotic limbs have limited motions and the user can’t feel what he or she is “touching.” a new approach using optical fibers implanted around nerves could transmit more data and let prosthetics speak to the brain.
As if people weren't worrying enough about advanced prostheses making amputees stronger than normal humans, now we have to worry if they are going to make them sexier, too. The prosthetics industry is growing rapidly, and, according to Hugh Herr, the director of MIT Media Lab's Biomechatronics Group, advanced prostheses will soon become envied in the same way the newest electronic gadget or the hottest car is today.
For victims of strokes, serious face injuries, or degenerative muscular diseases, losing the ability to blink threatens to compound their condition with corneal ulcers, or even eventual blindness. To help save the eyesight of people with damaged facial muscles, surgeons at the University of California-Davis Medical Center have developed a bionic eyelid implant that restores blinking ability with an artificial muscle.