The proCover (developed at the University of Applied Sciences in Linz), was presented at the Association for Computing Machinery’s UIST conference.
(proCover sensor socks for prosthetic limbs)
“The design and construction of prostheses that can emulate a natural sense of touch is of growing research interest,” reads the paper’s introduction. “However, many of the exciting innovations in this field will likely remain out of reach for most people… Our vision is to introduce a low-cost sensing wearable that can be applied retroactively to prosthetics to address this gap.”
Their solution lies in the fact that many users of prostheses put socks on them just like any ordinary foot. Why not make this sock out of smart fabric? So that’s just what they did. Layers of conductive fabric sandwich a piezoresistive layer, creating a pressure-sensitive grid covering the entire foot and ankle.
This was in turn connected to a ring of vibrating motors that can be worn wherever the user finds convenient. Pressure on a certain part of the foot would cause certain motors to vibrate at different frequencies. The researchers also tested a version that transmitted the angle at which a prosthetic knee is bent.
A worthy opponent was the golem. Hasan had it programmed at twice the statistically-averaged strength of a man and had its reflex-time upped by fifty percent. Its memory contained hundreds of wrestling holds and its governor theoretically prevented it from killing or maiming its opponent - all through a series of chemelectric afferent nerve-analogues, which permitted it to gauge to an ounce the amount of pressure necessary to snap a bone or tear a tendon. Rolem was about five feet, six inches in height and weighed around two hundred fifty pounds...