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Brain Implants Help Physically Challenged

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Essay title: Brain Implants Help Physically Challenged

Brain Implants Help Physically Challenged

The ever-increasing presence of computers in everyone's lives has generated an

awareness of the need to address computing requirements for those who have or may develop

physical limitations. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires any company with 15

or more employees to make reasonable attempts to accommodate the needs of physically

challenged workers (Grube 98).

The phrase, "Monkey see, monkey do" may need revision to "Monkey think, monkey do"

after analyzing the latest research. Scientists implanted small chips in rhesus monkeys' brains

and then trained the animals to move a joystick with their hands and chase a red dot moving

around a monitor screen. The implant, which is the size of a small pea, recorded the signals sent

from the motor cortex of the brain, which controls movement, to the hands. These signals were

analyzed and then translated to computer instructions that repeated the same movement.

In the next step, the joystick was disconnected. One monkey was able to repeat the cursor

action merely by thinking about the joystick motion (Computers and Your Future).

The researchers are hoping their work will help paralyzed individuals use their minds to

control computers and other devices within the decade. Some humans already have a similar

device implanted, but the newest hardware is smaller, has thinner wires, and uses fewer neurons

to function. Applications could include allowing

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