Rachel Neumeier

Fantasy and Young Adult Fantasy Author

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We live in a science fiction world

Here’s something that isn’t as cool as the title makes it seem, but still possesses a high Wow Quotient:

Woman receives bionic hand with sense of touch

Almerina Mascarello, who lost her left hand nearly 25 years ago, said: “It’s almost like it’s back again.”

The BBC reports that an international team that includes engineers, neuroscientists, surgeons, electronics and robotics specialists developed the bionic hand in 2014 — but the sensory and computer equipment it was linked to was too large to leave the laboratory.

However, the technology is now small enough to fit inside a backpack, making it portable.

The prosthetic hand has sensors that detect information about whether an object is soft or hard. Those messages are linked to the backpack computer that converts them into a language the brain can comprehend.

The information then gets relayed to Mascarello’s brain via tiny electrodes implanted in nerves of her upper arm.

One can see the day coming when the technology will be small enough to fit inside the hand itself. And perceive more than “hard” vs “soft.”

But it’s pretty amazing already.

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6 Comments We live in a science fiction world

  1. Elaine T.

    My first thought was of the anime Fullmetal Alchemist whose main character has ‘automail’ prosthetic limbs(one whole arm, one leg from knee down) that connect to his nerves.

    I like living in the modern day with modern medicine.

  2. Rachel

    SarahZ, no I hadn’t, and how interesting! Some of course we have — perpetual light, yay! — and some I am not quite clear on — such as the attainment of gigantic dimensions (?) and of varnishes perfumable by rubbing (??)

    Elaine, I must admit MY first thought was of the Six Million Dollar Man.

  3. Hanneke

    Varnishes perfumable by rubbing: like the rub-and-sniff patches you can sometimes encounter in a magazine to advertise something?

  4. SarahZ

    I sort of assumed that the gigantic dimensions meant Ant-Man style – a shrink/grow ray? No idea about the varnish :)

  5. Rachel

    Varnishes: maybe? But why would you want that? Why would you put that on a list along with really important things like eternal youth or whatever?

    Gigantic dimensions: ditto. Why? ???

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