Today's Wearables Are Tomorrow's Cyborgism!

Who doesn't want to be super intelligent, or amazingly strong or very fast or perhaps have added senses? We all know our five basic senses, sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. But senses go further than that and there are in fact over a dozen, such as hunger, thirst, itch, nociception also known as pain. Here are a few examples: Proprioception is the sense that gives you the ability to know where your body parts are, relative to other body parts. The vestibular labyrinthine is responsible for the sense of equilibrioception, this one helps you keep your balance and sense body movement in terms of acceleration and directional changes. It also helps to perceive gravity. Magnetoception is the ability to detect magnetic fields and its principal function is providing a sense of direction when detecting Earth's magnetic field; unlike birds humans have this sense underdeveloped. Wearables can not only enhance the human being but could also help people with reduced abilities be more autonomous. We will go over a few different categories of wearables such as added senses, user interface skin tattoos, exoskeletons and robotic prosthetic limbs. There is a company that promises much about added senses and they are working hard on providing their first added sense to the market. The North Sense, created by Cyborg Nest is a miniature, Bluetooth-enabled wearable device that users will attach to themselves with body piercings. The purpose is to vibrate anytime you are facing a magnetic North. It is also a first step in the transition in becoming a human cyborg.
Cyborg Nest - The North Sense Cyborg Nest - The North Sense
Cyborg Nest - The North Sense Cyborg Nest - The North Sense
So why through body piercing?  To Liviu Babitz CEO of Cyborg Nest, this was an important part, he sated that "the difference between a tool and a sense is that the tool you will only use it when in need, but a sense is something that is part of you all the time and helps you build your reality. The permanency of it plays a very important part, if it is not permanently part of you, it will remain a tool and will never get to that place where it's an intuitive sense." Smart tattoos, or DuoSkin as a new MIT Media Lab product in partnership with Microsoft Research has named it, is a temporary tattoo that has the purpose of being used as a connected interface input for smartphones, computers and we could push it to televisions and temperature control all this, for the moment via NFC. This is a nice clash between fashion and functionality, it would be like wearing jewelry on your or in your skin but with great features. With the advance in this technology we could all have a sheet with our current health data which would help first responders in case of emergency.
DuoSkin User Interface DuoSkin User Interface
This one is great example of functionality it is designed to be used as a User Interface for applications or software. The next two pictures will show more tattoos with electronics embedded with the tattoo, either with lights or color change.
DuoSkin Fashion TattooDuoSkin Fashion Tattoo
DuoSkin Tattoo with Embedded LEDsDuoSkin Tattoo with Embedded LEDs
Exoskeletons are gaining in popularity, in the early life it was designed for military applications, such as carrying extra weight, walking longer without tiring as fast. But that's not the only purpose of exoskeletons, they can help people with reduced ability to walk again, workers can now lift really heavy objects without even forcing.
Exoskeleton for reduced abilities Exoskeleton for reduced abilities
Exoskeleton to Augment Abilities Exoskeleton to Augment Abilities
This picture is worth so many words, imagine being on a wheel chair for the biggest part of a day and not being able to get up. Well this is the reality for too many people, within the next few years they will look at the future and say proudly that they will walk again since exoskeletons will make this possible. The following video shows someone that can't bend his fingers properly, but with a small exoskeleton on his hand things seem a lot less complicated.
Not only can we wear exoskeletons but there are starting to be more and more robotic prosthetics that will replace a whole limb and be very functional. With sensors plugged into the reflex movement muscles so that you can control the arm independently, some will be for normal use and others have advance functionalites for better grip or more specialized use or for running instead of walking. The following pictures show how advanced the technology is and there is a lot of place for improvement.
Robotic Prosthetic HandRobotic Prosthetic Hand
Robotic Prosthetic HandRobotic Prosthetic Hand
Prosthetic Legs for Running Prosthetic Legs for Running
The following video is a great example of how these can give people a better life quality, more freedom of action. It is great hope for people that have disabled or reduced abilities.
The day that the human is completely replaced by the machine will not happen, we will remain cohabitant with the machines and they will help us reach greater limits, achieve bigger goals, augment our security, our freedom. We will have a better capacity of learning and teaching. Undoubtedly, the first human beings to live an eternal life are probably among us already.   Sources
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