Robotic Onesie Assists Babies at Risk for Cerebral Palsy

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The University of Oklahoma has developed a robotic exoskeleton for babies that helps prevent cerebral palsy. Not to be all creepy, but you can't help but be reminded of the Matrix as you watch the baby in this video crawling around attached to the "robotic onesie."
 

thesmokingman

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Nov 22, 2008
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That was really touching Steve!


Cliffs, these kids all have some trauma or issue that prevents them from being mobile or developing mobility so they're not able to able to fully develop those centers in their brain. If they don't make those connections in their synapses the brain may/will eventually prune those connections related to motor control, spatial awareness, etc. The robotics hopes to simulate the child's limbs to allow or facilitate that crucial development between 4-8 mos.

the movement sensor data was digested by a machine-learning algorithm that determined what the baby is trying to do, then directed the robot to give him or her an extra boost in the appropriate direction, rewarding the infant’s attempts. So if a baby girl tried to push off with her back feet, but without enough force to actually move, the robot would helpfully zip her a few inches ahead. If she moved an arm as if to push to the side, the robot could almost simultaneously turn her in that direction. Pilot tests with earlier versions of the device demonstrated that infants who wore the sensor-laden suit more often engaged the robot, and had more limb movement, than infants who did not.
 

anthrex

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Awesome timing since I just started working with kids with cerebral palsy!
 

steakman1971

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Nov 22, 2005
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Agreed - that's a great use of technology. I knew someone that had a kid with this - they had a tough job raising their child. I look at my kids (even though they can be knuckleheads) and give thanks everyday.
 
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