biohacking, the creation of cyborgs, the connection between man and technology - no matter how you want to express it, it is about interventions on or rather in the body. This is intended to sharpen and / or expand the senses or to use technologies to renew one's own skills. A RFID chip the size of a grain of rice implanted in the hand can help to open doors without the otherwise necessary key. But that's a rather simple example ...
Chapter in this post:
- 1 About the growing biohacking and cyborg scene
- 2 Neil Harbisson and Moon Ribas as a cyborg artist team
- 3 reasons for biohacking and cyborg technologies
- 4 RFID: basically old hat
- Implant 5 magnets, compasses and LEDs in the body
- 6 Monitoring and optimizing vital signs
- 7 Conclusion on body hacking and cyborgs
- 8 Similar posts
About the growing biohacking and cyborg scene
Who would have thought it - especially in the USA, the group of people who want to use technical aids to transform themselves from normal human beings into an improved mix of man and machine is growing all the time. The aim is to expand the senses and change the appearance. However, the first cyborg officially recognized by a government does not come from the United States of America, but from Great Britain. The professional cyborg revolution emanates from Europe.
Neil Harbisson is the name of the man and he is born with achromatopsia; therefore sees the world only in shades of gray. In order to at least somehow perceive colors, he wears an antenna with a camera on his head, which converts the colors in his environment into tones. It is not for nothing that the cyborg and action artist often gives lectures under the title "I hear colors" - like here in TED Talk. With its antenna, Harbisson can also receive cell phone and satellite signals and so for example Recordings from the ISS transferred to his head.
Neil Harbisson and Moon Ribas as a cyborg artist team
Neil Harbisson and Moon Ribas here at "Talks at Google" describe the fact that the perception of colors via tones is not just a gimmick, but also a help for everyone who only sees gray tones:
Reasons for biohacking and cyborg technologies
There can be many reasons why a person decides to have devices and sensors implanted in their own body. As described in the video above, missing sensory perceptions can be replaced or new senses can be created. The time sensor also mentioned in the video can help travelers against jetlag. The seismic sensor implanted by Moon Ribas, for example, can even save human lives in earthquake regions, if it has a regional effect. Also the transmission of stimuli from machines or so-called golems or avatars, which are 3D-printed on other planets, is possible as an application area.
But maybe that's been thinking a little too far. But if you think like the two speakers in the video, you don't want to become one with the technology by bending or breaking. Stand in the foreground the expanded perception of nature and a stronger connection to it. And that is a starting point in the increasingly extensive discussion about biohacking and cyborgs often goes down. For some it may be a gimmick; however, other areas of application are quite useful.
RFID: basically old hat
But you don't necessarily have to go as far as described above to be allowed to call yourself a biohacker. RFID For example, is the magic word that comes in the form of chips. The detailed, English name "Radio Frequency Identification“Already indicates what it is about. Thanks to an implanted chip, a person can identify themselves clearly and no longer needs a key at their own front door, for example.
But readers at airports, large train stations and similar locations could also use this technology to identify passengers in the future. However, RFID in itself is not that new, just rediscovered. As early as 2004, some clubs in Spain were using the chipswhich are implanted in the hand to avoid queues and simplify payments.
Implant magnets, compasses and LEDs in the body
Anyone who feels the earth's magnetic field or would like to use it to always be able to align to the north can now do so through biohacking. I'm already very skeptical about ear piercings and tattoos - but I still don't allow myself to judge these changes in the body of the individual. After all, it takes a lot of courage. Incidentally, the implantable compass will soon be available from the company Cyborg nest brought on the market. This was co-founded by Neil Harbisson.
The technical changes to the human body that occur on the Body Hacking Con 2016 were shown in Austin, Texas. A microchip with five LEDs could be operated there on the back of the hand, for example. The effect: the LEDs shine through the skin. My suggestion for the application: if you want to turn by bike and hold out your hand, you can blink with the lights under your skin;)
By the way, you can find information about the next Body Hacking Con from January 27th to 29th, 2017 here.
Monitoring and optimization of vital signs
In addition to all rows of players and technical possibilities to facilitate or expand everyday life, "cyborg modules" can also be helpful in a medical sense. Companies like Apple have long been on the move Smartphones, Smartwatches, fitness bracelets as well as using similar gadgets and wearables for the healthcare industry. The next step, implanting this technology, is no longer a dream of the future. There will soon be more and more body hackers and cyborgs.
Conclusion on body hacking and cyborgs
It's not primarily about changing your appearance, but about expanding your senses and abilities. Whether it's colors you want to hear or seismological activity, there are many ways to expand your perception. But also the interaction with each other and with the technology around you can be improved through bio hacking / biohacking. The individual has to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages. In any case, it is an interesting field that will grow in size and influence in the future.
After graduating from high school, Johannes completed an apprenticeship as a business assistant specializing in foreign languages. But then he decided to research and write, which resulted in his independence. For several years he has been working for Sir Apfelot, among others. His articles include product introductions, news, manuals, video games, consoles, and more. He follows Apple keynotes live via stream.