Good Vibrations, Haptic Sensory Augmentation Implants
Aug 11, 2023
Project Output is a haptic feedback implant which allows users to experience and interface with hard data through vibration. Rather than displaying data as numbers, Project Output allows users to experience that information in a synesthetic manner. The implantable nature of the device integrates directly with the user’s nervous system, making it an extension of the user rather than a device. Through exposure over time, and some conscious training, users associate the vibrations with actual data allowing the neuroplastic capacity of the brain to provide an intuitive and integrated understanding of the linked device. Additionally, the power is supplied wirelessly external to the body, using a standardized battery module. This alleviates design constraints surrounding internal power storage and presents an opportunity for further implant design based on the wireless power supply. Current applications include blood glucose monitoring, radiation dosimetry, and pseudo-echolocation using an array of implants. However, given the modular nature, multiple additional categories of sensor data are possible. The benefits of designing for future end-user modifications, as well as promoting common standards, illustrate the power of designing platforms over products.
Quinn D. Mooney is a biohacker and Electrical & Biomedical engineering student at Clarkson University. His experience with biohacking has led to a focus on augmenting the human condition and sensory expansion. When not in the lab, you can find him hiking and kayaking in the Adirondack Mountains.