“As you can see, my legs are bionic,” said Hugh Herr on the TED2014 stage. “The artificial part of my body is malleable, able to take on any form, any function, a blank slate through which to create structures that can extend beyond biological capability.” Standing tall in a suit hemmed at his knees, Herr […]Continue reading
Why you should listen
Hugh Herr directs the Biomechatronics research group at the MIT Media Lab, where he is pioneering a new class of biohybrid smart prostheses and exoskeletons to improve the quality of life for thousands of people with physical challenges. A computer-controlled prosthesis called the Rheo Knee, for instance, is outfitted with a microprocessor that continually senses the joint's position and the loads applied to the limb. A powered ankle-foot prosthesis called the BiOM emulates the action of a biological leg to create a natural gait, allowing amputees to walk with normal levels of speed and metabolism as if their legs were biological.
Herr is the founder and chief technology officer of BiOM Inc., which markets the BiOM as the first in a series of products that will emulate or even augment physiological function through electromechanical replacement. You can call it (as they do) "personal bionics."
Hugh Herr’s TED talk
Adrianne Haslet-Davis performs the rumba at the end of Hugh Herr’s talk, “The new bionics that let us run, climb, dance.” Normally, this would not be a big deal for a professional ballroom dance teacher. But Haslet-Davis lost her left foot in the Boston Marathon bombing in April 2013. This rumba was her first public […]Continue reading
Day 3 at TED2014 was dense with science, design, conversation. Here’s a quick recap of some highlights: Hugh Herr and Adrianne Haslet-Davis’s surprise dance Hugh Herr is a bionics designer and multiple amputee. He gave a talk that was half mind-blowing — full of extraordinary advances in prosthetics, like bionic designs that produce the same forces […]Continue reading