Rudi’s class “The new bionics that let us run, climb and dance” response by Jennifer Dong

The speaker emphasized in his TED Talk that “A person can never be broken, and it is the technology that is broken”. I felt moved by these words, which convey the speaker’s belief that he and his fellows would definitely succeed in helping the disabled people feel not disabled anymore.

As a scientist in MIT, the speaker with his fellows intend to advance the technology to help the disabled people. He introduced many complicated theories and working process, in order to make the mechanical legs interact with the human body more like a real leg. One discovery is the “mirroring” theory, that is, the synthetic part becomes soft while the body becomes stiff, and vice versa. I think this discovery could be a breakthrough in the project, because it helps the mechanical leg “knows” how to react to the thigh’s reaction. As for the technical part to realize this “mirroring” effect, I can use the knowledge that I learned from the class to interpret it. The action of the thigh could be the “Input”. When the thigh is stiff, then the voltage becomes 0V, then the “output”, which is the mechanical leg, would be “compliant”.

Apart from helping disabled people, the great invention, exoskeleton also saved people’s effort and energy to run or do some hard movements. This achievement manifests that this interactive invention is not only make the mechanical leg be similar to the real leg and interact actively with the human body, but also take a step forward to improve people’s lives. In a word, the invention is not only for the disabled people, but is for all the people in the world.

2 thoughts on “Rudi’s class “The new bionics that let us run, climb and dance” response by Jennifer Dong

  1. I am glad to know that you found a source of inspiration in this scientist. I think that these ideas you have about how to use technology and making something transcendental could be the starting point of an interesting conversation.

    May be at this stage in the course it would be also important to think why all what the speaker says is so relevant and moving. He is directly affected. He has a stake. The insights he is giving us are first hand. Let’s keep that in mind when we start building our projects.

    • I felt a little bit confused after I finished this week’s reading concerning on the “fashion” and “discretion”. It seems that when coming up an idea to make a product, the technology would go first, then comes with the art and design (I think in the TED Talk, the scientific researches towards human bodies appear prior to design). In that case, the place for the art and design is relatively limited, as some small changes on the appearance might affect the function of the product. So Rudi, when do you think the design phase should take when inventing a product?

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