Search This Blog

Friday, November 6, 2009

A glimpse of the future: Robots aid Japan's elderly residents

According to a news story written by Calum MacLeod of USA Today,

"It looks like a scene from Robocop or one of the Terminator movies: A human steps into a sleek robot suit and is miraculously transformed, suddenly capable of astonishing feats of strength.

But this is no sci-fi film — it's a promotional video by Cyberdyne, a Japanese electronics company. It shows an elderly male patient with Parkinson's disease being strapped into a robotic skeleton that, using sensors attached to the wearer's skin, reacts to nerve impulses and moves its "arms" and "legs" accordingly.

The robotic suit, known as the Hybrid Assisted Limb (or HAL), is designed to boost its wearer's strength by a multiple of 10. In July, it allowed the patient at the Seiko En nursing home in Tsurugashima, Japan, to walk for the first time in two years, Cyberdyne CEO Yoshiyuki Sankai says.

"I was surprised," Sankai admits. "I expected him to stand up, but not to walk."

To read the remainder of this article and to view the video aboutHAL  talked about above please click on this link:

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/robotics/2009-11-04-japan-robots_N.htm

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It is great to see that scientists are using their creativity and talents to help people in need. The media seems to inundate  us with news stories which emphasize  the negative uses of technology by humans!

How does HAL work you ask?

The answer is:


  • When a person attempts to move, nerve signals are sent from the brain to the muscles via motoneuron, moving the musculoskeletal system as a consequence. At this moment, very weak biosignals can be detected on the surface of the skin. "HAL" catches these signals through a sensor attached on the skin of the wearer. Based on the signals obtained, the power unit is controlled to move the joint unitedly with the wearer's muscle movement, enabling to support the wearer's daily activities. This is what we call a 'voluntary control system' that provides movement interpreting the wearer's intention from the biosignals in advance of the actual movement. Not only a 'voluntary control system' "HAL" has, but also a 'robotic autonomous control system' that provides human-like movement based on a robotic system which integrally work together with the 'autonomous control system'. "HAL" is the world's first cyborg-type robot controlled by this unique Hybrid System.
  • "HAL" is expected to be applied in various fields such as rehabilitation support and physical training support in medical field, ADL support for disabled people, heavy labour support at factories, and rescue support at disaster sites, as well as in the entertainment field.
  •  
  • Source: of text  http://www.cyberdyne.jp/English/robotsuithal/index.html
  •  
  • Source of image of HAL:  http://techravings.info/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/i-am-ironman.jpg

No comments:

Visit GM Alexandra Kosteniuk's Women's Chess Blog:Please click on the image below:

Visit GM Alexandra Kosteniuk's Women's Chess Blog:Please click on the image below:
Chess needs more women and girl participants and administrators!

Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed



Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia



A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed



Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein



The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi



The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller



Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns



Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama



Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -



Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being



The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.