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When Sam Schmidt gets behind the wheel of his Corvette, he starts the engine with the sound of his voice, accelerates with a puff of air and tilts his head to turn the car — a semi-autonomous vehicle called SAM designed by Arrow Electronics — around a corner.
With the Paralympics coming up in September, athletes the world over are training hard right now. Engineers at BAE Systems have come up with an indoor, computerised training system that will allow professional wheelchair racers to speed along without moving an inch.
“I believe that losing my hearing was one of the greatest gifts I’ve ever received,” says Elise Roy. She says: “When we design for disability first, you often stumble upon solutions that are better than those when we design for the norm.”
Illustrators and sisters Jessica and Lianna Oddi have a lot to say about living with a disability – but have decided to draw their thoughts instead.
If you wanted to be a tattoo artist but lost your drawing arm, what would you do? JC Sheitan Tenet has an answer: get a prosthetic arm that’s better than flesh and bone. He teamed up with artist Gonzal on a steampunk-inspired limb that integrates an inking needle, a pressure gauge and piping.
Square Enix and Eidos-Montréal have teamed up with Open Bionics, a specialist in low-cost prosthetics, to develop new designs based on the world of Deus Ex. The franchise delves deep into a possible future where human augmentation is commonplace, changing society and warfare in equal measure.
A project from researchers at the Johns Hopkins University is providing a prosthesis to help women with lower limb amputations to walk in high heels. It’s an effort that could have a huge positive impact on people’s’ lives, from female veterans to the fashion conscious.
Brazilian researchers have developed a wheelchair that can be controlled through small facial, head or iris movements. The team says the technology could help people with cerebral palsy, those who have suffered a stroke or live with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and other conditions that prevent precise hand movements.
By combining a wireless connected EEG headset from Emotiv and an assistive communication app, California-based Smartstones is bringing the power of speech to those who have difficulty communicating verbally. The “think to speak” technology works by reading the brainwaves of the user and expressing them as phrases spoken through the app.
Layer Design’s new product takes 3D printing’s unique ability to quickly provide tailored products and uses it to build a custom wheelchair with an attractive design. The design of the product, known as the GO wheelchair, is the result of research conducted with dozens of wheelchair users, as well as medical professionals, over a six-month period of information gathering.