"Augmentation is about looking to the future. The question isn't 'should we or shouldn't we' because it's absolutely going to happen. We're speaking at the first conference on human augmentation and cyborgs: HumanxDesign. What do you think?"
"This document is meant to engage a deeper conversation around the issues of human augmentation while reflecting the specific views of those involved. It is not meant to be exhaustive in scope or legislative in nature. It is the beginning of what is hopefully a debate that reaches the highest levels of healthcare, technology, and government."
It is obviously a very, very bold call to pretend "the brightest minds" would be there this summer. Fact is, they have no idea where, this summer, the brightest minds will be.
(C) Copyright by Deus Ex / Courageous / Open Bionics / Square Enix
I find it relevant to point out that the current monologue (it sure is not a debate that is "able" to "answer questions" for sure) employs the visual metaphor of an amputated arm and then some prosthetic glitz images mostly built on myoelectric technology, where as a real user of heavy manual activity support I can not just say with confidence but with absolute titanium iron hammer security: we are far, far, far, far away from establishing a "normal" function with this.
A body powered arm at least works through situations whereas the myo arm typically if not always craps out. So to then go and use that type of symbolism to announce "augmentation" is absolutely bitter and cynical, seeing as if us normal people had to lean over backwards to apply for and get approved what nowadays is called "bionic" arm.
Of course insurances are reluctant to buy these - they want people with manual work to get a lot better at it, whereas whenever I do work that is not actually manual I am just as good without the prosthetic arm for the most part. So really that is what this is about.
I mean I do not go out either, put these people's faces on a website and write "contains actual brains" underneath to pay back that type of hype. Because if ever that was a debate then we'd have to look at actual arguments which is where their air gets thin soon. So, no, Open Bionics is not right. It is not "absolutely going to happen".
Also, no one ever acknowledged that with focus applications a prosthetic hook (but not the modern plastic toys) can be regarded as "augmentation" at least inasmuch as mechanical and thermal robustness is concerned - but as we already discussed, sharp observation has never been a strength of the current bionic hype afficionados. That is why my suggestion of plastering this site with their faces asking were there brains is actually funny.
But let us not digress. Before that "augmentation" is "going to happen", god placed "solving problems", and we see in their work, and advertising, just how sharp their eye really is: lots to do, I say.
So, for starters, I suggest to use proper wording.
Any "improvement" of myo arms currently does not at all go towards anything like "augmentation". At best, there may be a minimal step towards "less crappy". But not even that is happening, as far as we know all they do is play with different looks. The iLimb ("industry standard") currently rips its gloves apart while unused or within a few minutes of washing a car, it does not provide a foreseeably reliable precision grip, it is still too heavy to type for half a day (I mean actual type work as in hours of words per minute), the socket / electrode systems tank in too cold or hot temperatures also due to sweat, the skin gets chafed very soon, and the battery driven systems also crap out at low temps. You cannot carry a lot nor heavy things, and the grip operated by the usual forearm electrodes tends to malfunction when moving posture or elbow.
Just take it from there.
I will challenge the reporter to have their healthy sound limb amputated for one of these crappy "augementation" hands and if they deny, we can maybe then discuss why - to come to a closer understanding? You see why they do not want to "discuss", right? There's nothing there.
If anything it should be called Gadgetation. Deus Ex currently trying to pull the "augmentation" card with el-cheapo 3D plastics prosthetic hand of sorts, that you cannot even use to make a single pushup (alright I weigh 80 kgs) ... it's not augmentation, not even restoration. Far far from it. Nonsensication, puppetation, gadgetation.
Is it clear to you, why?
Until 5 years ago everyone was running after "life like" appearances in prosthetics. Until then, people in public spaces still were looking at each other. All arm amputees - except me, introducing the "red hand" early 2009 as first ever - tried to hide in plain sight, and "life like" was the latest and best, with prices for a painted glove ranging up to 30 000 USD.
This has DRAMATICALLY stopped in many places - since a good 2 years I can walk in public without prosthetic arm on and people do NOT look.
They stopped staring!
Why? The majority is playing with their mobile things! A majority of people ceased to look, stare and care. They all don't give a damn.
Great stuff for anyone suffering from stares before like me.
But bad news for those that wanted the attention. So what do they do, those that crave attention but not performance - obviouisly?
Clearly, gadgetation is a new instrumentation to try to catch attention back, attention that is lost to, like, Pokemon Go.
That's where it's at.
If anything they try to augment the amount of attention they get ; )