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Medicine The Military Biotech Hardware

Bionic Arm Might Go Into Clinical Trials 107

prostoalex writes "The bionic arm project sponsored by DARPA is nearing completion, and might undergo clinical trials. 'The arm has motor control fine enough for test subjects to pluck chocolate-covered coffee beans one by one, pick up a power drill, unlock a door, and shake a hand. Six preconfigured grip settings make this possible, with names like chuck grip, key grip, and power grip. The different grips are shortcuts for the main operations humans perform daily.'"
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Bionic Arm Might Go Into Clinical Trials

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  • by iq in binary ( 305246 ) <> on Sunday February 03, 2008 @01:15AM (#22279740) Homepage
    And keeps this project funded until it finds a private investor.

    I've worked on DARPA funded projects before, and there are many ingenious and utterly useful ideas that almost got there but never did. DARPA funds run out, and DARPA never picked up funding on the projects again. We're talking life saving inventions and concepts, almost ready and out the door, DARPA dropped them.

    There was a friend of mine that developed a snake-cam (for rescue rovers like those used at the WTC) that could extend and retract into a module up to 2 feet, with the same mobility as the snake-cams you see SWAT and medical personnel use (Trachioscopies, etc.), geared specifically for rescue use. Had the mechanical side figured out, was working out kinks in the remote control aspect of the pullies (involved in the design to manipulate the "snake"), and DARPA pulled funding short. 9/11 came shortly there-after, but it was too late to revive the idea, my buddy went out of business and abandoned it.

    But something like this? I would personally dedicate my online presence to putting something together a-la-Child's Play to keep these guys in business.

    Any ideas in case DARPA twinkie-spines this one?

Marvelous! The super-user's going to boot me! What a finely tuned response to the situation!