Apparently, cyborg technology is not that mainstream. However, this technology is constantly evolving due to relentless innovation in technology. Today, cyborg implants are pushing breakthroughs in the field of medicine and are becoming quite popular. There are different kinds of implants. If we were living in 2100, I guess the popular ones would be brain implants that help improve memory. Until then, we have people with implanted RFID chips in their arms to set a personalized security in their home. The chips will replace the traditional lock and keys. The person that has been embedded with the chip is the only person that can open his or her house. A scanner that scans the part on their arm where the chip is implanted.
Despite the lack of usefulness of the case presented above, possibilities are endless. Implants can help humans to have extra strength, run faster, jump higher – they can supplement an extended range of human abilities. There are several obstacles to achieve these things. One is the technology. We still have a long way to go. Others are more related to the society we live in. Due to different conservative groups present nowadays, this technology can spark ethical issues. Implants can cross the boundaries created by religion. Or they can be used for evil things.
Being a human is the most precious gift that we all enjoy. Life itself is a precious privilege which you should use to achieve greatness. That is why scientists and engineers are continuing to develop the implants technology. The main foreseen uses are to help people born handicapped or which become so due to an unhappy event in their life. With this technology, we will be able to give hope to these people and help them to better experience the beauty of life.
One good example is the Automated Wearable Artificial Kidney (AWAK). Patients suffering from kidney diseases usually need to undergo dialysis for them to continue living. However, traditional dialysis can bring complications to the patient. This is what the researchers from UCLA and Veterans Affair Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System want to avoid, if not completely prevent. The researchers have already come up with a design of a wearable artificial kidney that is fully-automated. The artificial kidneys are designed to work as the original organ.
People with implants
11. Claudia Mitchell
Claudia Mitchell – She is the world’s first woman that become a cyborg. The bionic arm is attached to her right shoulder; the robotic arm can be controlled by her thoughts. She was the fourth person to receive a thought- controlled bionic arm. Before having equipped with the implant, Claudia used to do her chores with her one arm and her feet. Though she can do the basic movements, her condition made her self- esteem low thinking that she’s not normal anymore. Claudia lost her arm during a motorcycle incident leaving her with a permanent damage but due to the cyborg innovation, Claudia can now use both arms and keep her feet on the ground.
10. Kevin Warwick
Dr. Kevin Warwick – He is fascinated with cyborg and he work as a University professor in UK’s University of Reading. In 1998 He conducted many experiment on electronic implants. He personally installed a microchip in his arm to enable him control the lighting, computer and heaters. The “good” doctor didn’t hesitate to conduct this experiment on his own body. Also, he founded a project named Cyborg to inspire others develop the cyborg technology. Dr. Warwick is determined to be the world’s first human being to be a complete cyborg.
9. Jerry Jalava
Jerry Jalava – After his unfortunate motorcycle accident, Jerry lost the tip of a finger and it made him decide to attach a 2GB USB port into his prosthetic. However, it’s not permanently attached and it is being held by a rubber fitted to his finger. The storage device is not used to upload information into his brain. He uses it to store personal files for his convenience. Jerry thrives in the field of programming. I guess we can’t call it a cyborg per se, but we love the initiative so we still count him.
8. Steve Mann
Professor Steve Mann – He got his PhD in Media Arts from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is an investor and a researcher that thrives in the field of computational photography.
He was able to design a headset that is equipped with a microcomputer. The headset can record and play both audio and video that can be easily controlled by the headset. While this doesn’t necessarily make him a real cyborg, he still looks bad-ass with that thing on, so we’ve included him in our list.
7. Cameron Clapp
Cameron Clapp – He got hit by a train and his both legs and an arm got amputated when he collapsed along a railroad track. He was 14 years old when that unfortunate incident happened. Engineers was able to build him prosthetic legs which have a microprocessor attached into them. His brain can control the prosthetic legs by the help of the embedded microprocessor. Since then, Cameron become active in doing community service and today, he is a dedicated athlete.
6. Nigel Ackland
Nigel Ackland – Nigel lost his arm in an accident when he was still working. He was given a bionic arm that can hold or grip delicate objects. His bionic arm is attached to his remaining forearm and it is controlled through muscle activities. Apparently, his bionic arm can perform variety of movements that is truly amazing. He can pour a liquid in a glass container and He can control the movements of his bionic fingers to grab or grip delicate objects. Surprisingly, even a glass container never breaks.
5. Jesse Sullivan
Jesse Sullivan – Jesse is equipped by a bionic limb that is imbedded with nerve sensors that can be controlled through his mind. Aside from moving his bionic arm, Jesse extends his cyborg abilities by letting his cyborg limb send information on the exact pressure that is needed to hold a particular object. He can also feel the temperature of his surroundings through his bionic limb.
4. Neil Harbisson
Neil Harbisson – Because of his severe color blind condition, Neil has an antenna like specialized electronic eye behind his head. The specialized eye will render the colors that he sees and sound it like a musical scale. The attached specialized antenna will let him know the actual color that he sees. His day to day perception of color is just black and white. With the help of Cyborg technology Neil can now know the actual colors that he sees. His naturally born condition called archromatopsia or “extreme colorblindness” didn’t hinder him from achieving his goals. He is a thriving in the field of arts and considered as a capable cyborg artist.
3. Michael Chorost
Michael Chorost – When he reached the age of 30, he suffered a condition which rendered him completely deaf. A microcomputer was embedded into his head and ears to completely bring back his hearing.
2. Dick Cheney
Dick Cheney – Dick a former U.S Vice President that suffered from serious heart condition. The only procedure that was going to save his life was to use a machine implant (called as the artificial heart). He is known to be the living Darth Vader because of a mechanical device that is attached into his heart to help it pump.
1. Jens Neumann
Jens Neumann – He is the world’s first person to receive an artificial vision system. He has a brain implant that is connected to the artificial eye that lets him see lines and shapes.
What are your thoughts about the development of Cyborg technology and how do you think it will shape our future? Share your comments below.