Friday, February 10, 2017

Bionic Woman - IRL

I was continuing research for my upcoming novel (STAR WARS meets GHOST IN THE SHELL) and I came across (in my research of current applied robotics) this absolutely fascinating YouTube video.

In the video, an amputee is connected to a mechanical hand via the nerves and muscles on the stump of her arm. Not only can she move the mechanical hand by 'movement' of her phantom limb, but by connecting electrically to the nerves in her arms they gave her a sense of touch delicate enough to sense when the fingers closed around a soft plastic ball.

Here's the video. So cool.

The implications of this sort of technology are amazing. Some of the questions (with interesting room for exploration via science fiction) I thought about when I saw this video:

- How do you keep a 'smart' arm from being hacked? 
- How soon before this sort of technology is readily available for most people?
- How soon before this sort of technology is used to not only replace limbs, but add to the human form: such as an extra finger for a fanatic guitar player, or used by bio-hackers to create a functional tail?
- What kind of things are possible when this tech is paired with VR?

So interesting. A little scary.

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