The future is Artificial.. You don’t agree..?? Wait, I am not talking about the emotion “artificial”.. I am talking about the good “artificial”.. Especially in medical terms..
Medical technology has progressed and developed so much that a lot of the parts of the human body that are sick or dying can be replaced with artificial parts..
In medical parlance artificial is also termed as bionics which is a combination of the terms ‘bio’ (relating to life) and ‘nics’ from electronics.. Bionics therefore is the study of artificial or mechanical systems that are designed to replicate parts of living organisms..
Prosthetic (artificial body part) limbs like hands and legs are quite common right now and are used by many human beings in active day to day life and also in sports..
Paralympics (paraplegic + Olympics) for physically challenged athletes first started in 1948 when Ludwig Guttmann organized a sports competition which involved world war 2 veterans that had spinal injuries.. The Paralympic Games is now a major international multi-sport event, involving athletes with a range of physical disabilities which includes impaired muscle power, impaired passive range of movement, limb deficiency, leg length difference, short stature, vision impairment and intellectual impairment.
Since 1988 the paralympics have been held almost immediately after the regular Olympic Games with the latest one having just completed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil..
Not just in sports, in day to day life as well bionics are helping people in many ways.. The development of 3D printing has also become an important tool in the bionics environment.. The combination of these technologies are helping humans to
- be mobile as in stand, walk, run, jump etc with the use of prosthetic limbs, body suits..
- see with use of bionic retinas
- regrow bones
- use 3D printed living human body parts — including ears, muscles, and jawbones — using a combination of living cells and a special gel
Bionic feet and hands controlled by the mind are also becoming increasingly popular and although expensive at this stage, it will come into the mainstream sooner than later..
While you may be thinking that it’s all sci-fi, according to below infographic from Nova, bionic enhancements for humans have been around for thousands of years..
Not just body parts, but our intelligence could also be enhanced through artificial intelligence which in itself is a topic for another day..