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Discussions of cyborg technology tend to be relegated to science fiction literature and TV programs like Star Trek. This Topic in Depth looks into current issues and developments in the area of cyborg technology. The first website, from the UC Santa Barbara Department of English, (1) lists a variety of resources on cyborgs, from philosophical articles and literary criticism to current scientific practices. A related area of research is brain-computer interfacing (BCI), which is described on this website from the Helsinki Institute of Technology (2). Research on neural engineering, which combines work in electrical and computer engineering, tissue engineering, materials science, and nanotechnology, is also described on this website from USC (3). The Discovery School (4) suggests this lesson on technology for grades six through eight, in which students explore how the human body uses electric signals to send messages to and from the brain, and then how the nervous system uses those signals, with the option for additional discussions regarding the potential for cyborg technology. The next website from National Public Radio (5) provides a current look at applications of cyber technology, most of which are in the area of healthcare. For example, this program reports on how "scientists make it possible for quadriplegics to control a television, play simple computer games and check e-mail... by just thinking about it." Another interesting experiment--Project Cyborg--involves the neuro-surgical implantation of a device into the median nerves of this researchers' left arm and is described this website (6).
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Alternate Title UC Santa Barbara Department of English: Cyborg ResourcesHelsinki Institute of Technology: Brain-Computer InterfaceUSC: Neural Engineering LabDiscovery School: Future BodyNPR: Thinking Is Doing With Cyborg TechnologyKevin Warwick: Project Cyborg
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Date of Scout Publication 2005-03-25
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