The Loh Down On Science

What does ESP really stand for? Extra-sensory possibilities!

Superman has x-ray vision, Spiderman can sense danger. And our cool super sense?

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science, saying:

Good news!  Meet Cybernetics professor Kevin Warwick, of England's University of Reading.  Not satisfied with our original five senses, he believes implants could help us sense forms of energy.  Think x-rays, radio waves, or magnetic fields.  Implants might even help us communicate better!

Science fiction?  Nope, it’s already happening.  Tiny magnets embedded in people's fingers wiggle to let them sense magnetic fields.  Fun and creepy!  But are extrasensory implants useful?  

Warwick has had a number of devices attached to the nerves in his wrist: a kind of echolocator helped him walk around blindfolded, another let him control a prosthetic hand.  An implanted chip let him turn on lights from a distance.  Similar implants could help amputees or the blind. 

So new senses could be therapeutic, or they could be the first step towards our cyborg future. Or both!

Hasta la vista, The Clapper!  Or not.

***** For more 90-SECOND SCIENCE FACTS, click here.*****

The Loh Down on Science is produced by LDOS Media Lab, in partnership with the University of California, Irvine, and 89.3 KPCC. And made possible by the generous support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.


blog comments powered by Disqus