MIT researchers are demonstrating a new robotic exoskeleton leg system that takes the weight off your back when carrying a heavy pack. In recent experiments, they've demonstrated that the contraption can take 80 percent of the load of an 80 pound backpack. The current prototype apparently screws with your natural walking gait, but they're hoping to tweak the design to enable a normal stride. The research was led by professor Hugh Herr, a double amputee whose pioneering research in the Media Lab's Biomechatronics Group is focused on new prosthetic devices. From the MIT News Office:
Exoskeleton devices could boost the weight that a person can carry, lessen the likelihood of leg or back injury and reduce the perceived level of difficulty of carrying a heavy load.
The person wearing the exoskeleton places his or her feet in boots attached to a series of tubes that run up the leg to the backpack, transferring the weight of the backpack to the ground. Springs at the ankle and hip and a damping device at the knee allow the device to approximate the walking motion of a human leg, with a very small external power input (one watt).
On the crowdfunding site Massdrop, board-game fan Cassidy Williams is taking preorders for a $160 Scrabble-themed mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX Brown switches (if you've got a mechanical keyboard kicking around that you'd like to convert, you can get the $47 keycap set instead).
Sony’s Digital Mavica FD was a digital camera that saved pictures directly onto floppy disk: a wonderful convenience in an age when flash cards (and their readers) were expensive and rare. Images were saved at up to 1280×960 (1.2 megapixels!) and “not that bad”, and it takes up to 6 seconds to save them to […]
I think all modern computers should look like these vintage ones photographed by James Ball a couple of years ago. [via Wired]
The Nintendo Switch is king when it comes to gaming on the go, but it’s tough to lose yourself in Zelda: Breath of the Wild or Skyrim if your battery dies out. That’s where this Nintendo Switch Battery Charger Case comes into play. Built exclusively for Nintendo Switch, this pack allows for uninterrupted charging while you play, […]
Creative designers play a pivotal role in engaging target audiences and customers, and while companies are eager to bring more of these professionals on board, you’ll have a hard time getting your foot in the door if you’re not using the industry’s best tools. From Adobe to Maya, the eduCBA Design & Multimedia Lifetime Subscription Bundle […]
As more companies aim to reel in costs and boost productivity, project managers are becoming an essential part of many operations, and they’re paid handsomely for their expertise. But, while demand is high, you’ll have a hard time getting your foot in the door if you’re not toting the right certifications. The Official Lean Six Sigma […]