Cyborg Cockroach Sparks Ethics Debate

I was interviewed by Emily Underwood for her recent article in Science Magazine on the “Robo Roach” by Backyard Brains, the world’s first commercially available cyborg.  I was able to test drive Robo Roach 12 at the recent TEDxDetroit show.

This concept is based on some of the same neuroscience that is used for treating Parkinson’s patients with the new “pacemaker” stimulation approach.  I have two family friends both in their first three months with a new neural pacemaker and while the effects vary between the two and across all patients who have the procedure, both have experienced a market improvement in their quality of life.

Here is the YouTube video showing how the cyborg is controlled by an iPhone app:

Thanks to Emily for her interest in this technology and the ongoing ethics debate.  What do you think, weird science or freaky cool?

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October 24, 2013 · 7:39 pm

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