Independence is Coming!



by | Robotics

I’ve been a little too busy doing other things, and I haven’t updated my website for several months now; that’s terrible!

I will start by introducing my robotic arm, well, not mine. The thing I work with is in the office with the clinical trial team. It’s pretty incredible! Let me go back to the beginning.

When we first started, it wasn’t anything physical or something that looked even close to a robot arm. It was just a “dot” on the screen, a big monitor with a dot floating around it, that was all!   Well, I only had to control the dot with my imagination. I thought it would be a piece of cake, my goodness! It was hard as heck! It took numerous attempts, but we did it, thank God! I managed to make it work as intended. 

Such a dot represented the cursor of a computer, so I was playing with it, moving it around the screen. I started with four basic, imaginative movements: I moved my head left to make it move to the left, I moved my head to the right to make it move to the right, and I moved my arm up and down to make it move up and down. 

I did not keep any of those videos to show you, sorry! 

After training with the dot control for some time, we moved on to a different project. It was called a planar robotic manipulandum for upper limb assessment and movement assistance. It was a device on a table with a crystal clear plastic base full of cables and electronics. The device connected to my arm at the wrist, and I could move it through a horizontal workspace while measuring the applied forces. They also had an assistive glove called the exoskeleton that assisted with opening and closing my fingers.

I did keep videos of the Planar Table and Exoskeleton. 

Then, we went back to play with cursor control but tried different imaging techniques. I felt a little silly sometimes, but I was trying to do everything I was told. I was trying to move my left thumb to go left, my right thumb to go right, move my head upwards to go upwards, and move my toes downward. As time passed, we learned a lot of new stuff and strategies. 


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