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Category: Bad Hand Day

Bad Hand Day V - will the mobile app actually start?

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Bad Hand Day V - will the mobile app actually start?; published January 23, 2018, 23:01; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=8150.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Bad Hand Day V - will the mobile app actually start?}}, month = {January},year = {2018}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=8150}}


As I was lucky tonight, the app for the Touchbionics iLimb actually started after the 8th attempt. That is better than it was, there were times when it did not start at all.

So first, one spends a bit of time "warming the system up".

Time lapse video loop (2x), exuding serene obsolescence:

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iLimb / myoelectric arm: chronic skin rash due to local myoelectric skin electrode placement during bicycle ride [complication report] [bad hand days/weeks/month] (towards the AUA/WIFUCD dichotomy)

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb / myoelectric arm: chronic skin rash due to local myoelectric skin electrode placement during bicycle ride [complication report] [bad hand days/weeks/month] (towards the AUA/WIFUCD dichotomy); published January 29, 2017, 17:10; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=7130.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb / myoelectric arm: chronic skin rash due to local myoelectric skin electrode placement during bicycle ride [complication report] [bad hand days/weeks/month] (towards the AUA/WIFUCD dichotomy)}}, month = {January},year = {2017}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=7130}}


Testing myoelectric arm components in general: uncharted territories

Prosthetic arms in general do not usually appear to be tested a lot before getting thrown at the user, which is a statement that I find many examples for (glove may disintegrate all by itself; glove dies after just a few minutes of car washing; bolts never checked for size; etc.).

This is not to say that this is intrinsically bad - no. This is to say that the burden of testing and suffering the associated negative consequences of that also then reside with the user. If - at all - a company finds it unacceptable that users perform the testing and resulting discussions bad in any way, then (and only then) may they wish to consider a different type of product marketing and testing approach.

The question of whether manufacturers of prosthetic components test anything at all, also for skin safety, that question: it now also officially extends to skin electrodes.

As suggested by their ample advertising, a range of "bionic" myoelectric arms are demonstrated and shown around, as being able to sustain bicycle riding. So we have to assume that everyone seems to be of the opinion that it is cool to ride bikes, with, say, wearing an iLimb.

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Der Cybathlon 2016 wurde bei den Armprothesen von einem Mann mit "Hook" gewonnen [#research #surprise #bodypowered]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Der Cybathlon 2016 wurde bei den Armprothesen von einem Mann mit "Hook" gewonnen [#research #surprise #bodypowered]; published October 11, 2016, 18:34; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=6670.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Der Cybathlon 2016 wurde bei den Armprothesen von einem Mann mit "Hook" gewonnen [#research #surprise #bodypowered]}}, month = {October},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=6670}}


2 Comments

Ich weiss jetzt nicht, ob Sie das mitbekommen haben. Und ob Sie begreifen was da passiert ist.

Aber am Cybathlon 2016 (Cybathlon, ETH, NCCR Robotics), einer Art Behindertenschaulaufen ohne besonderen  wissenschaftlichen aber dafuer sehr publikumswirksamen Hintergrund [wieso/was:link] mit mehrheitlich durch das Patronat der ETH suggerierten "High-Tech-Hintergrund" gewann ein Mann das Armprothesenrennen, der einen "Hook" trug [siehe detaillierte Griffanalyse, link]. Arschcool, mit 67 ein Senior, dort auch klar der älteste.

Fehlerfrei und schnell.

bodypoweredclothespins

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The Cybathlon as iconic Trash Culture modern day Circus show: arm amputees, arms race and technical considerations regarding specific applicants [proper research domain assignment, pre-race evaluation of critical check points, detailed in-race grip analysis, cultural domain considerations, gonzo race report]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - The Cybathlon as iconic Trash Culture modern day Circus show: arm amputees, arms race and technical considerations regarding specific applicants [proper research domain assignment, pre-race evaluation of critical check points, detailed in-race grip analysis, cultural domain considerations, gonzo race report]; published October 7, 2016, 17:28; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=6378.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - The Cybathlon as iconic Trash Culture modern day Circus show: arm amputees, arms race and technical considerations regarding specific applicants [proper research domain assignment, pre-race evaluation of critical check points, detailed in-race grip analysis, cultural domain considerations, gonzo race report]}}, month = {October},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=6378}}


Executive summary

  • Arm amputation is more a social (and complex) than just a manual handicap in many daily situations. Therefore many approaches to dealing with it are social and socially motivated, including hand color. You did land on a right below elbow amputation website, like, apparently, so that is the angle from which this comes. Also we made sure this is the title of this website. Different aspects may apply to higher level and bilateral arm amputation, but that is not the target of this website.
  • Conversely, most actually manual problems are not major. What heavily impacts many unilateral arm amputees after 5-8 years or maybe after 10 -20 years, is the impact of overuse of the intact arm and asymmetry related problems. A rational approach to prevent that is to use prosthetic arms that excel particularly at the heavy to extreme range of physical exposure. Those are typically modern body powered arms. These use well established control principles, but can be made from very modern materials. They suffer from medial representations that are largely negative ("Captain Hook"). Myoelectric arms are termed "high tech" simply because they may contain a battery and motors, but they suffer from a battery of intractable or constrained problem combinations.
  • For that, the ETH has so far not been necessary to add to the field of prosthetic arms, but trash culture approaches have a lot going for them regardless of that. My own practical and pragmatic research (see also below) contains such elements and now, the ETH also is proud organizer of a Circus freak show (which in essence is an event that lacks academic approaches and reduces intellectual participation to staring).
  • Neither the ETH nor the NCCR Robotics ever managed to acknowledge that or develop even the tiniest solution to solve just about anything in that matter (remember the title of this page?). That is perfectly OK as quite possibly, myoelectric arms are uninteresting from an actual researcher point of view once one understands the full scope of problems, and body powered arms are uninteresting because their problems are a combination of mechanics, material science, and context dependent issues that usually require deep insights which is currently performed by a small relatively close knit international community of amputees, developers and researchers.
  • Given their academic background claims, ETH or NCCR based approaches could and should have focused on studying intricate differences and aspects of prosthetic arm success and failure during the Cybathlon competition in all situations, pre-race and in-race. I mean: if you claim you want to do, or push, research, better sit down and work on a really detailed introductory explanation to show that we all see how much you understand what detailed features we are all looking for. I am most definitely all for that, but I do not shy away from weird staring contest evaluations either. These define an amputee's daily reality more than you might like.
  • But to no surprise, the technical research representatives neither prepared, nor carried out, such, so any technical analysis of the race that then was presented to the public to actually increase some real understanding for the effectively present research problems and real world issues so it will never be possible in sufficient detail or write any great scientific paper about it. Or, not from how it looks now.
  • Thus, academically (not industrially, not as bystander, person that loves to stare at arm amputees or spectator), the event of the Cybathlon prosthetic arm race was a thoroughly missed opportunity if not a failure.
  • This does not mean that the Cybathlon as such was meaningless; it just showed that body powered technology (TRS, TRS prehensor) as very calmly and perfectly performed and carried out by a 67 year old man (Bob Radocy) that did not visibly hurry but chewed gum for the whole event left all "robotic" competition behind - while I had warned the organizers from a one-dimensional overly simplistic evaluation two years ago. I had always told them exactly what Claudia Breidbach said in her statement after the finals race: you cannot compare, across various different arm amputation with adapted different devices, what a good performance is. They knew as they had been extensively informed beforehand. The search for what prosthetic arms should be able to actually do well remains ongoing though, the odyssey apparently continues with a Cybathlon 2020.
  • And while any evidence based rational mind would now more than ever (a) want a body powered prosthesis and (b) further research on that type of prosthesis, it was the very clear aim by the organizers to not include these arms in the race at all, until I had imposed myself onto the organizers, had a very serious word with them and convinced them to admit also body powered arms which they did.
  • The Swiss National Foundation (SNF) is strongly advised to look into the intricate aspects of all failures of (a) research opportunities missed and (b) strategic solutions actually needed in prosthetic arm and hand field, (c) appoint very competent coordinators and advisors there and (d) not finance silly "competitions" such as this that do not further science at all or (e) finance more myoelectric nonsense.
  • All the same, the Cybathlon was a great experience in how ETH hype, tech media hype and gadget hand industry hype take a royal tanking against real life based real men, and, if you need a short but intensive read on the reasons why the myoelectric arms missed out today, check my Cybathlon Symposium scientific contribution, you will find there more relevant text than in many other places.
  • I do not hate myoelectric arms. Personally I must have invested more finances into my own myoelectric gadgets than into my body powered components. However, that does not make me blind, dumb or gadget happy. I still test, look, think and analyze. I still work on finding better ways, solutions, parts or usage tricks for both systems. But then, coming from an engineering perspective (funny you come here to read that) - finding the exact problem, identifying the exact issue, has been placed before being ablt to solving it. And the simple beauty of engineering is, that whatever your attempt at covering up your tricks, at the end of the day, the contraption either works, or it does not.
  • While Professor Riener verbally once (1) at the Cybathlon race itself mentioned the fact that cable powered technology won (we were there, see Gonzo report below), they made sure none of that leaked to the Swiss television, or BBC, or newspapers, or IEEE, or other press. They simply buried the fact that they were left eating dust by some very athletic older gentleman wearing a body powered prosthetic arm. Because that is like having someone in sandals and swim trunks run up on Mount Everest. They do not report that as it is seen as putting the other efforts to shame rather than being seen as someone, something, a situation to finally learn from. And that puts massive question marks to the news writers, tech representatives and researchers: is what you do something we have to believe, because quite clearly, facts are not consistent with it? Do you represent a type of religion or belief system?
  • Not all are like that. The Scientific American, a journal that I am a subscriber and reader of since many, many years, reports extremely well, and explains the actual technical aspects of the winning device.
  • The Cybathlon was announced as competition that allows visitors to "understand the issues surrounding disability in a practical way". When not even the organizers understand these issues, and not even in a theoretical way, how on earth can they assume an ability to instruct visitors so they understand disability issues?

Trash Culture, the Cybathlon prosthetic arms race show Circus, and other prosthetic limb Trash Culture approaches

"Mommy, do I have to repeat every mistake others made before me myself?" - "Yes, one can learn so much from mistakes".

Don't get me wrong here.

Trash Culture is a great contemporary experience. If anything, this is what gets people talking. But it is not research or academic. This is not at all a critique, but an attempt to better localize this strange event in context of prosthetic arms, amputation and society.

It is just a Circus.

To unmake it a Circus and Make It a Technical Contest, a bit more attention to detail would have be needed. A lot more attention to detail would have made it a great event. That all was missed.

Now, I will supplement you with the required extra details below to make it a research observation despite the organizers successful attempts to keep it simple, hip, sexy and trashy .... but let that not spoil the fun for you.

boot

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Bad Hand Day IV (iLimb, as usual)

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Bad Hand Day IV (iLimb, as usual); published September 6, 2016, 09:18; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=6317.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Bad Hand Day IV (iLimb, as usual)}}, month = {September},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=6317}}


I tried to wear my iLimb on Sunday, for cleaning out travel equipment and so on.

But the hand never stopped closing. I opened it, it closed by itself. Always.

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Bad Hand Day III (iLimb again)

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Bad Hand Day III (iLimb again); published May 4, 2016, 10:24; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5937.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Bad Hand Day III (iLimb again)}}, month = {May},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5937}}


So for an on-call work day, I try to use the myoelectric iLimb.

Try.

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iLimb Ultra Revolution "bad hand day" II [what you must consider]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb Ultra Revolution "bad hand day" II [what you must consider]; published March 28, 2016, 22:38; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5814.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb Ultra Revolution "bad hand day" II [what you must consider]}}, month = {March},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5814}}


Again, Easter Monday now, a "bad hand day" occurs.

IMG_0253

Not out of the ordinary given recent experiences, but, there you go. As it appears, we are here to "try out" this new wildebeast that Touchbionics built, the iLimb Ultra Revolution.

 

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Vacuuming with iLimb Ultra Revolution [ADL]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Vacuuming with iLimb Ultra Revolution [ADL]; published February 29, 2016, 18:29; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5727.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Vacuuming with iLimb Ultra Revolution [ADL]}}, month = {February},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5727}}


Allegedly, one can actually use the iLimb for vacuum cleaning floors. I set out to try that.

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iLimb glove self destructs (in-storage product suicide) [WTF]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb glove self destructs (in-storage product suicide) [WTF]; published February 15, 2016, 16:02; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5651.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb glove self destructs (in-storage product suicide) [WTF]}}, month = {February},year = {2016}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=5651}}


During the last few weeks, I was wearing my "real prosthetic arm" (the one that works for work, the body powered arm) because real work is a bit too much for my "unreal prosthetic arm" (the "iLimb ultra revolution") for some reasons (I pulled weights of up to >100kg a few times, et cetera, I always wear my body powered arm and a Hosmer work hook for that, which however does work like a charm as that real prosthetic arm is geared towards these uses). I then let my skin recover and was not wearing any prosthetic arm for a bit after that.

With the effect that my "unreal prosthetic arm"  sat in the shelf for a few weeks.

There, as I found out when I wanted to put it back to use, it had committed in-storage product suicide. The glove had been put onto the hand on October 30th and the hand, since then, was not used more than a total of maybe 10-20 minutes, doing not much I guess.

Hand and glove all had been in what seemed to be good condition, and not damaged prior to this in-storage damage that the hand had inflicted unto the glove.

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iLimb Ultra Revolution "bad hand day" [what you must consider]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb Ultra Revolution "bad hand day" [what you must consider]; published January 17, 2015, 14:54; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=4259.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - iLimb Ultra Revolution "bad hand day" [what you must consider]}}, month = {January},year = {2015}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=4259}}


With all that can be said about prosthetic hands, particularly inasmuch as surfing the overpriced under-functional segment, one still cannot overstate the aspects of the domain concerning "useless", "screwed", "beyond repair" and maybe (still) "beyond understanding".

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A myoelectric prosthetic arm does have a mind on its own [just watch this - problems with postural interference, limb position(ing) effect, possible solution].

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - A myoelectric prosthetic arm does have a mind on its own [just watch this - problems with postural interference, limb position(ing) effect, possible solution].; published December 8, 2014, 18:40; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=3784.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - A myoelectric prosthetic arm does have a mind on its own [just watch this - problems with postural interference, limb position(ing) effect, possible solution].}}, month = {December},year = {2014}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=3784}}


armcrazy

Easily, a myoelectric arm gets out of control.

But I liked the next one even better. And mine also has such tendencies. They are inherent to the technology. These things really have a mind on their own.

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Stump after wearing myoelectric "bionic" prosthesis for 10 hours [graphic #voightkampff]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stump after wearing myoelectric "bionic" prosthesis for 10 hours [graphic #voightkampff]; published May 5, 2014, 17:43; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=2979.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stump after wearing myoelectric "bionic" prosthesis for 10 hours [graphic #voightkampff]}}, month = {May},year = {2014}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=2979}}


2 Comments

Any self respecting medical doctor, orthopedic surgeon, prosthetist, and "bionic" researcher will ask you - in a concerned professional way - "and, do you wear your prosthetic arm often, hopefully even daily?".

We also must accept that wearing "bionic" arms is nowadays assumed to constitute "human enhancement". This obviously is something I will directly and confrontatively label as bitter, ignorant, harsh and degrading cynicism.

If I do wear my prosthetic arm daily, in their view, that makes me a better human or even more human at the same time as I am, in their view, maybe not so much a better human but a "good doggy". Really and in fact, we have a reality split in that - at the same time and at once - my realities are two fold and split:

(1) Outside: On one hand, me trying to wear a prosthetic "super" hand - such as a "bionic" hand - makes my shape outline appear more like the shape outline of other people and so there is this aspect of possibly becoming a better, a deeper human. Conversely, the disfigurement of an arm stump thus makes me less of a human - and that is also what the face of many shee shee froo froo people, many so-called superficial people, will tell me when (or if) I look at them. Clearly, my amputated arm can make other people feel that I am less human. And it clearly does so on any given occasion. This is to a very small part remedied by me wearing this "bionic" apparatus - a machine for symbolism and "hope" far more than a machine for grasping, working, getting stuff done or feeling well.

(2) Inside: On the other hand, wearing a myoelectric arm is a really uncomfortable and skin damaging ordeal that is cumbersome and even in the best of all worlds painful. It feels bad to a degree, where I cannot possibly be totally human any more - as I have to push all normal human reactions such as pain, self respect, worry about the skin on my stump, fear of what all that pain does to me, etc. aside. There is a truly heartfelt authentic element in praising my stubborn wearing of a myoelectric "bionic" arm using the words "good doggy".

So, wearing a "bionic" myoelectric arm on the outside is an act of extreme humane-ness, it approximates the un-disfigured appearance like nothing else. As long as it does not approximate anything, it represents an 80'000 USD promise - and that is extreme in terms of symbolism.

At the very same time, what goes on inside the socket is beyond comprehension to many people - as it is not just not human, but worse, it has truly inhuman aspects. It lowers one, soul wise and as an individuum, in my view.

Here is how my stump looks like after a duration of 10 hours of wearing my iLimb Ultra Revolution at the office, typing and carrying light weight files, possibly holding a cup while rinsing it with water, photographed 1/2 and 7 hours after removing the prosthetic arm. To get the battery to last that long, I had switched the hand off for extended periods of time. Like, when I was typing. Never did my arm look like that after even hard work with the body powered arm such as jobs like hedge cutting [link], scrubbing [link] serious furniture moving [link] and so on. Yesterday I cut the hedges again, got rid of major amounts of stuff and moved a few hundred liters of green waste to the disposal with the body powered arm and really, the skin of my arm is not at all like what we see below - all is smooth and no problem. It is not the prosthesis as such that is a problem generally. It is the difficulty to achieve electrode fit and socket fit at once that really constitutes the "bionic" dilemma here, combined with hard lift and pull forces. Leg amputees can not understand from their own sockets, they experience different problems, not these. If it just was some simple body powered arms, or passive arms, we'd all be cool. Look, I am not saying "eeks, bad". I am saying, why the pansy boy type of immature excitement over what really is still problematic and massively overpriced technology when it comes to "bionic" arms? And here: can you reflect on the deeper meaning of what "bionic" arm wearing may entail?

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Car wash - what happens when one uses an iLimb Ultra Revolution *just* to assist holding the water tube [glove damage within minutes]

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Car wash - what happens when one uses an iLimb Ultra Revolution *just* to assist holding the water tube [glove damage within minutes]; published May 3, 2014, 13:57; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=2965.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571793353, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Car wash - what happens when one uses an iLimb Ultra Revolution *just* to assist holding the water tube [glove damage within minutes]}}, month = {May},year = {2014}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=2965}}


The iLimb Ultra Revolution is a great product in that one wishes it to succeed and to prevail. And in that one loves it for no reasons.

Really, for no reasons. Here is a glove inspection after a normal car wash, when I used the iLimb to hold on to the tube that was blasting water. I used my (left) hand to direct the tube's sprayer, and I used the (right) (iLimb) hand to drag the tube behind me, and to hold it, while walking, very slowly, around the car while washing it down.

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