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Norm's Desk

Keep up with our fearless leader right here! Join the fight or just admire the grit.



Does it come with a lightsaber?

The FDA has approved a prosthetic arm, invented by Dean Kamen, inventor of the Segway, that is thought controlled and capable of performing complex functions.    The DEKA Arm is nicknamed "Luke" after Luke Skywalker because he received a realistic human hand prosthetic after losing his real hand in a lightsaber fight with his dad, Darth Vader (sorry if that is a spoiler, but you should really get out more).  

The DEKA Arm detects electrical activity caused by the contraction of muscles close to where the prosthesis is attached. Those electrical signals are then sent to a computer processor in the DEKA Arm, which triggers a specific movement.

During its trial, the FDA equipped 36 participants with the DEKA Arm to determine how it performed during household tasks. According to the FDA, 90 percent of participants were able to complete tasks that they couldn't with their current prosthesis, which include using keys and locks, preparing food, feeding oneself, brushing hair and using zippers.

It is also the same size as an actual human arm.  However, it will not work for all amputees.  Limb loss at the elbow or wrist will not allow full functionality.  Still, this is a fantastic development for amputees and a testament to the genius of inventor Dean Kamen.  Dean, how about working on a lightsaber?


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