Monday, June 2, 2008

Brain-Activated Mechanical Arm Invented

As evidence that good things, sometimes great things, still do happen in the world, I offer the following:

Scientists Create Neuro-activated Mechanical Arm

"Scientists implanted a grid with 100 tiny electrodes (about the size of a large freckle) on the motor cortex in two monkeys.

The grid in each monkey was connected to a neuron with wires from the brain to a computer that analyzed the collective firing of the neurons, translated that into an electronic command and sent it instantaneously to the arm."

What's especially great is that the article's author really understands what has happened here, beyond the advent of a great new technology:

"When science is uncluttered by political agendas, dubious methodology and other junk, every miracle is within the reach of the mind of man."

Bravo to Dr. Andrew Schwarz and his team at the University of Pittsburgh for their achievement. Kudos, too, to the editorial writer at the Tribune-Review for advertising and celebrating it. This is the sort of thing that should (and used to) be front page news. We should never become blasé about things like this, no matter how commonplace they become.

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