the making of a cyborg

Happy 2017!

The AMAZING team at Prosthetics in Motion allowed me to record them as they went through the process of building my bionic arm, and I put the footage all together in a video I’d like to share:

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officially a cyborg

25Wednesday was a pretty big day for me, partly because I turned 25 but mostly because I officially became a cyborg. It was the day I brought home my new BeBionic hand from Prosthetics in Motion. The arm, whose design was inspired by the look of the Star Wars Stormtroopers, has eight different grips and features a wrist (made by Ottobock) that rotates 360 degrees.

Even before I left the prosthetists’ clinic, I was playing with building blocks and making (horribly unstable) structures with the new hand. And then I spent that night out with friends spinning butter knives 360 degrees (to the horror of the bartenders.) I even managed to open all my birthday gifts with it.

Stormtrooper

Seriously, I’ve only had this hand for a few days and I’m already in love with it and everything it can do. I can’t wait to post more updates and photos and videos here!

 

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first dynamic fitting

Yesterday I went back to Prosthetics in Motion for the first dynamic fitting for my new bionic hand. Last time, we only had a test socket to work with to get the sensor sites right. This time, the arm was fully built and ready to be tried on. In terms of the creative process, this stage is like the first full draft of an essay before you edit and revise it for publication. (Yeah, I totally snuck an English teacher reference in there.) While it was fully made and completely functional, the arm still needed some fine-tuning to make sure that the fit and usability were absolutely perfect.

 

The arm, in all its glory

The arm, in all its glory

The arm itself is gorgeous, although it’ll look very different by the time I take it home in a few weeks. The body of the arm starts off as transparent, with all the wiring inside clearly visible. The thin red strips inside it are the battery packs, and the blue wires connect everything together. It’s pretty crazy how everything fits in the arm that way, isn’t it?

For this fitting, we focused on functionality and fit. So after making sure that the arm was the right length and size for me cosmetically, the prosthetists had me test out the arm again and asked about the fit of the socket. It pinched my small arm in two places when we started, but they stretched out and cut out parts of the socket to make it super comfortable.

We ran into some technical trouble when the thumb kept jamming and the sensors weren’t lining up properly against my small arm, but the guys went to work at diagnosing the problem and ironing out the issue right away. They really are an amazing team of prosthetists (and extra kudos to them for putting up with my terrible jokes and constant nosy questions)!

If all goes according to plan, I have one more dynamic fitting and one final fitting to go until I can take my new bionic hand home. I’m beyond excited!!!

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testing out my new hand

It’s been FOREVER. I know, I know! I’ve taken a very long break from blogging in the past couple years, but I’ve missed it like crazy and now I’m back!

A couple months ago, I decided to look into getting a new prosthesis with more functionality than my passive cosmetic hand. Now I’m about to become a bionic woman over here, and I wanted to make sure I document every moment of the process and provide a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to make and use a new myoelectric hand. I’m getting a hand called the BeBionic, which is made by SteeperUSA. It’s absolutely gorgeous and looks futuristic as heck!

I can’t wait to introduce you to my new cyborg hand so, without further ado, here’s a video of my first fitting with the test socket and sensors.

 

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would you rather? (with books!)

I stole this from The Book Journal and just had to do it. Feel free to take it and fill it out for yourself!

 

1. Would you rather read only trilogies or only stand alone novels?

I prefer stand-alone novels. I get a little nervous when trilogies and series suck me in for book after book, leaving me waiting for the next one’s publication date. Torture!

large-12. Would you rather read only male or female authors?

Both! Geez, how could someone choose? There are so many great male and female writers.

3. Would you rather shop at Barnes & Noble or Amazon?

I’m obsessed with my Kindle and spend 34% (my economics-major boyfriend calculated) of my income on books and ebooks.

4. Would rather books became films or TV shows?

I can never follow TV shows, so I’m going to say films.

5. Would you rather read 5 pages a day or 5 books a week?

5 books a week – the more, the better!

6. Would you rather be a professional reviewer or an author?

One day I’ll finally find the time and motivation to write my own novel. I should probably be more proactive about that….

large7. Would you rather read your favorite 20 books over & over or only read books you’ve never read before?

I love starting new books.

8. Would you rather be a librarian or a bookseller?

I’d love to be a bookseller.

9. Would you rather only read your favorite genre or every genre except your favorite?

Oh, this one is tough. I think I’d have to choose to read only my favorite genre.

10. Would you rather read only physical books or ebooks? 

While I’m a huge fan of physical books, I love the way I can carry an entire library with me wherever I go with my Kindle.

 

(images from weheartit.com)
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