Wired’s bionic tour over your body

Today’s bioWired story is What if bionics were better on what-if scenarios in body hack by Chris Oakes.

terminatorBionic in the present sense refers to having particular physiological functions augmented or replaced by electronic or electromechanical components. The article covers recent bionic projects like Cyberhand the European multidisciplinary hand prosthesis for amputees, and EyeTap, an always-on eye-cam that has been adapted for control via signals sent from the wearer’s occipital lobe. What are the similarities and differences comparing bionic trials to the continuous regeneration treatment called partial immortalization, the eventual stem-cell therapy? First, the pattern of future acceptance: the distance between denial and acceptance could turn as much on what current machines can and can’t do, as it does body image. Second it is interesting to see which option is more radical body transformation: bionics, electronic devices, Wi-Fi implant in your ears or maximum life extension treatment via regenerative medicine. The similarity is that both treatments could have deep psychological consequences. Both kind of treatments require early adopter character, and self-experimenting skills. Consider the Kurzweil case and the new kind of body awareness 250 supplements/day equals to.
Main difference is that in the case of partial immortalization the aim is to maintain body function with the same tools (molecules, cells, tissues, organs) evolution itself uses while in bionics, replacements come from silicon and not from carbon. There is a distinction in the focus of the treatment: pimm is just about feeling yourself indefinitely cool in your present make-up while bionics is into changing your very physical constitution.

Similar psychology and different physiology.

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