Archive for the ‘cyborgs’ category

Jan 21, 2024

Connective tissue inspired elastomer-based hydrogel for artificial skin via radiation-indued penetrating polymerization

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, robotics/AI, transhumanism

Robust hydrogels offer a promising solution for the development of artificial skin for bionic robots, yet few hydrogels have a comprehensive performance comparable to real human skin. Here, the authors present a general method to convert traditional elastomers into tough hydrogels via a unique radiation-induced penetrating polymerization method.

Jan 17, 2024

Amazing Robot Controlled By Rat Brain Continues Progress

Posted by in categories: biological, cyborgs, robotics/AI

Some technologies are so cool they make you do a double take. Case in point: robots being controlled by rat brains. Kevin Warwick, once a cyborg and still a researcher in cybernetics at the University of Reading, has been working on creating neural networks that can control machines. He and his team have taken the brain cells from rats, cultured them, and used them as the guidance control circuit for simple wheeled robots. Electrical impulses from the bot enter the batch of neurons, and responses from the cells are turned into commands for the device. The cells can form new connections, making the system a true learning machine. Warwick hasn’t released any new videos of the rat brain robot for the past few years, but the three older clips we have for you below are still awesome. He and his competitors continue to move this technology forward – animal cyborgs are real.

The skills of these rat-robot hybrids are very basic at this point. Mainly the neuron control helps the robot to avoid walls. Yet that obstacle avoidance often shows clear improvement over time, demonstrating how networks of neurons can grant simple learning to the machines. Whenever I watch the robots in the videos below I have to do a quick reality check – these machines are being controlled by biological cells! It’s simply amazing.

Jan 16, 2024

Breakthrough gives artificial muscles superhuman strength

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, nanotechnology

Putting “socks” on artificial muscles made from inexpensive materials helps them produce 40 times more flex than human muscle, a global research project has found, featuring researchers from the University of Wollongong (UOW) at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (ACES).

UOW researchers from ACES joined with international partners from the U.S., China and South Korea to develop sheath-run artificial muscles (SRAMs), that can be used to create intelligent materials and fabrics that react by sensing the environment around them.

It builds on the work over the past 15 years by researchers from UOW and their international colleagues who have invented several types of strong, powerful artificial muscles using materials ranging from high-tech carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to ordinary fishing line.

Jan 13, 2024

AI wearable contraption gives you superhuman strength

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, robotics/AI, wearables

A new way to experience adventure and challenge your limits.

Do you love exploring the great outdoors, but feel limited by your physical stamina or the weight of your backpack?

A robot startup, Hypershell from Y-Combinator China, has created an all-terrain exoskeleton that will take your outdoor adventures to the next level.

Jan 11, 2024

An artificial muscle device that produces force 34 times its weight

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, cyborgs, robotics/AI, wearables

Soft robots, medical devices, and wearable devices have permeated our daily lives. KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology) researchers have developed a fluid switch using ionic polymer artificial muscles that operates at ultra-low power and produces a force 34 times greater than its weight. Fluid switches control fluid flow, causing the fluid to flow in a specific direction to invoke various movements.

KAIST announced on the 4th of January that a research team under Professor IlKwon Oh from the Department of Mechanical Engineering has developed a soft fluidic switch that operates at ultra-low voltage and can be used in narrow spaces.

The results have been published in Science Advances (“Polysulfonated Covalent Organic Framework as Active Electrode Host for Mobile Cation Guests in Electrochemical Soft Actuator”).

Jan 5, 2024

Harvard’s robot exosuit aids Parkinson’s patients walk without freezing

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, robotics/AI, wearables

Researchers from Harvard SEAS and Boston University reveal its transformative effects, offering newfound mobility and independence for individuals with this debilitating condition.

The wearable tech successfully eliminates a common symptom called ‘gait freezing’ to restore smooth strides for Parkinson’s disease sufferers.

Jan 4, 2024

Cyborg computer combining AI and human brain cells really works

Posted by in categories: biological, cyborgs, robotics/AI, supercomputing

A new biohybrid computer combining a “brain organoid” and a traditional AI was able to perform a speech recognition task with 78% accuracy — demonstrating the potential for human biology to one day boost our computing capabilities.

The background: The human brain is the most energy efficient “computer” on Earth — while a supercomputer needs 20 mega watts of power to process more than a quintillion calculations per second, your brain can do the equivalent with just 20 watts (a megawatt is 1 million watts).

This has given researchers the idea to try boosting computers by combining them with a three-dimensional clump of lab-grown human brain cells, known as a brain organoid.

Jan 3, 2024

Bionic artificial skin with a fully implantable wireless tactile sensory system for wound healing and restoring skin tactile function

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, transhumanism

Although artificial skins can facilitate the healing of damaged skin, the restoration of tactile functions remain a challenge. Here, Kang et al. report an artificial skin with an implantable tactile sensor that can simultaneously replace the tactile function by nerve stimulation and promote skin regeneration.

Dec 30, 2023

Fourier Intelligence launches production version of GR-1 humanoid robot

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, robotics/AI

Fourier Intelligence has been manufacturing exoskeletons and rehabilitation devices since 2017. The Singapore-based company launched its first generation of humanoid robots this year, designated the GR-1.

The humanoid platform includes 40 degrees of freedom distributed throughout its body, which measures 1.65 m (5 ft., 5 in.) in height and weighs 55 kg (121.2 lb.). The joint module that is fitted at the hip of the robot is capable of producing a peak torque of 300 Nm, which allows it to walk at a speed of 5 kph (3.1 mph) and carry goods that weigh 50 kg (110.2 lb.).

Continue reading “Fourier Intelligence launches production version of GR-1 humanoid robot” »

Dec 30, 2023

Welcome to the Cyborg Era: Brain Implants Transformed Lives This Year

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, robotics/AI

This year gave rise to an incredible mix of brain implants that can record, decode, and alter brain activity.

It sounds like déjà vu—brain-machine interfaces also lived rent free in my head in last year’s roundup, but for good reason. Neuroscientists are building increasingly sophisticated and flexible electronic chips that seamlessly integrate machine intelligence with our brains and spinal cords at record-breaking speed. What was previously science fiction—for example, helping paralyzed people regain their ability to walk, swim, and kayak—is now reality.

This year, brain implants further transformed people’s lives. The not-so-secret sauce? AI.

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