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Category: Self help

Artistic visions for prosthetic design III - playing with instructions and materials

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Artistic visions for prosthetic design III - playing with instructions and materials; published May 22, 2009, 11:46; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=176.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Artistic visions for prosthetic design III - playing with instructions and materials}}, month = {May},year = {2009}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=176}}


I started out being surprised by the visual attraction and emotional impact of a primarily artistic (rather than functional) prosthetic arm. I continued to walk in amazement for a while.

Then I tried a simple but very powerful design variation myself - my Red Hand Experiment that started with a mannequin hand that I had painted plain red using glossy acrylic paint. I loved it. I loved the idea of having come up with this myself, of having painted it myself, of having worked on constructing the wrist myself.

Thirdly I feel that I know best what's good for me in terms of artwork. I may be wrong, obviously - there are far better artists that can draft and showcase prosthetic designs. But they don't call me, they do not send me their prototypes, let me wear them, they don't see to it that their designs make it into production - nothing of that kind. Not until recently that is, when Dan started his business. Furthermore, prosthetic artwork is not insurance covered and so price plays a huge role. Otto Bock, Hosmer or TRS do not carry artistically enhanced prosthetic parts - and if they would, I probably could not pay for them.

And so one of the things I consider is doing it myself. Even if other people will never understand it - being able to creatively shape the way I can fill in my own missing part helps greatly to live with it. I find that working on my arm is good just to feel better about it. That creative process feels like a necessary part of healing to me.

So now seems like a good time to look at technical aspects.

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Airport nightmares I - Wien Schwechat

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Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Airport nightmares I - Wien Schwechat; published May 3, 2009, 16:10; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=178.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Airport nightmares I - Wien Schwechat}}, month = {May},year = {2009}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=178}}


Am 3.5.09 wurde ich am Flughafen Wien kontrolliert. Da ich eine (mechanische) Armprothese trage, geht das Warnsignal des Metalldetektors jeweils los. Der Sicherheitsmitarbeiter kam gleich auf mich zu. Seine Finger begannen rasch, in etwas verwirrter Weise meinen Kabelzug abzutasten, aber irgendwie schoen er dort haengen geblieben zu sein und fiel in eine Art Rewind-Play-Rewind-Play-Mode. Er begann dann etwas von “Hemd ausziehen” zu sagen, was ich nicht genauer verstand, da es kein ganzer Satz war.

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MSM wrist 0.1 [prototype, open prosthetics]

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Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - MSM wrist 0.1 [prototype, open prosthetics]; published March 4, 2009, 15:38; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=113.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - MSM wrist 0.1 [prototype, open prosthetics]}}, month = {March},year = {2009}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=113}}


5 Comments

After my problems with rather small bolts and a cylindrical spring-based squeeze-hold mechanism for wrist/connector unit (Otto Bock part 10V9/10V10, cost 429.95 CHF) and after I did not detect any subsequent technical innovation being mentioned in the answers I obtained from the manufacturer (Otto Bock), we decided to move on to build our own setup.

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Stump socks / protectors for different applications I

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Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stump socks / protectors for different applications I; published November 15, 2008, 15:24; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=114.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stump socks / protectors for different applications I}}, month = {November},year = {2008}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=114}}


3 Comments

I am not always wearing the prosthesis or keeping my stump uncovered to air it out. Often, some protective clothing or stump socks are helpful.

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Stigmatisierung und Dämonisierung II (deutsch) - Wilde Projektionen, Amelotatismus

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stigmatisierung und Dämonisierung II (deutsch) - Wilde Projektionen, Amelotatismus; published October 5, 2008, 23:36; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=350.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stigmatisierung und Dämonisierung II (deutsch) - Wilde Projektionen, Amelotatismus}}, month = {October},year = {2008}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=350}}


Projektionen

Manche Leute reagieren sehr stark auf sichtbare Behinderungen. Nicht alle, aber manche. Und zwar so stark, dass es ein Thema wird.

Eine Amputation am Arm ist kaum übersehbar, und Reaktionen sind offenbar unvermeidlich, wenn man sich nicht Mühe gibt, den Schaden zu verstecken. Man macht dann allerlei Erfahrungen. Zum Glück viele ganz normale, alltägliche Erfahrungen, und zwar die, dass es nichts oder nicht viel ausmacht.

Da das kaum je ohne auch massivere Gemütsbewegungen bei gewissen Leuten geht, werden aber auch derartige Begegnungen zur alltäglichen Erfahrung. Das in solchen Situationen oft stattfindende weitere Begegnungszentrums kann nur verstanden werden, wenn man sich um das Thema Projektionen kümmert.

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Stigmatization and demonization III - counter terrorism

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Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stigmatization and demonization III - counter terrorism; published October 5, 2008, 15:23; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=146.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stigmatization and demonization III - counter terrorism}}, month = {October},year = {2008}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=146}}


3 Comments

One thing is to learn about concepts behind stigmatization and demonization, at least in as much as a rough and generalized understanding is concerned.

The second thing is to learn to adapt this to one's own way of dealing things. And one aspect of that - in my experience now - is to communicate proactively.

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Stigmatization and demonization I - does the Uncanny Valley make us getting terrorized by the public?

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stigmatization and demonization I - does the Uncanny Valley make us getting terrorized by the public?; published October 5, 2008, 15:18; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=49.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Stigmatization and demonization I - does the Uncanny Valley make us getting terrorized by the public?}}, month = {October},year = {2008}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=49}}


9 Comments

"You're different because one or more of your physical attributes doesn't work properly, and that difference makes me uncomfortable but intrigues me at the same time" (prime perception of mainstream society, see The Cinema of Isolation, p. xii).

I would not go as far as attributing negative experience with other people to causes such as stigmatization and demonization each and every time. That itself would mean to somewhat demonize others. We are all different and not everyone has a great day always.

Yet there is little left to guess in a recent 2009 campaign of the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie. There I feel that we are very clearly equated with fake watches and fake people. Yet, the question of authenticity is a serious issue not just in prosthetics but in society. What is it that we see as 'real'?

On the other hand, no other person that looks at me as disabled person would ever admit to stigmatizing or demonizing me because of visible disability. Yet, it is undeniably one of the bigger factors that may affect a non-disabled person and at the same time mostly outside of reach as this is a matter located anywhere but even remotely close to an acceptable dinner table subject.

And particularly initially - but also for some people still after two decades of being an amputee - the stigmatization and demonization by the public has something deeply terrorizing and intimidating about it. It is worth dedicating some time to this subject before starting to talk back.

Example: I regularly attend a swimming pool, and there, I participate in a club training. A while back, a well educated lady who also is a member of that club told me she could not swim there any more. She said it would deeply depress her to see "someone like me" swim so much faster than her. I then took that as a compliment and asked her whether she considered that I had been even faster when I had two hands and whether she was not at all depressed by the presence of such two handed and even faster swimmers in our club? - She did not come back to club trainings. Seeing a person with a visible disability outperform her was far more threatening than being outperformed even more by non-disabled swimmers. So, there appears to be a threat that makes people go out of their way.

Ultimately we will have to look at design principles from their social meaning. For that, both sociology of disability and design principles are relevant areas of observation.
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Interesting books

Cite this article:
Wolf Schweitzer: Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Interesting books; published August 13, 2008, 21:45; URL: https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=33.

BibTeX: @MISC{schweitzer_wolf_1571790913, author = {Wolf Schweitzer}, title = {{Technical Below Elbow Amputee Issues - Interesting books}}, month = {August},year = {2008}, url = {https://www.swisswuff.ch/tech/?p=33}}


Amputation and dealing with it contains a lot. It is a full bag of stuff. Body, soul, brain, fitness - all play a role. I compiled a list of books to consider.
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