Tony Stark is undoubtedly a unique superhero because he has no superhuman talents and instead uses his understanding of technology to get over his limitations, stand out, and become amazing. You know another area that Tony Stark has beautifully illustrated the potential of, aside from being a fantastic depiction of the cinematic application of IoT? Human augmentation is the solution.
Tony Stark has demonstrated via the use of advanced technologies that disabilities are not only treatable but also present opportunities for people to actually improve themselves in place of these limitations. So certainly, the transformation of Tony Stark into Iron Man is a fantastic and really cool example of human augmentation.
Technology that improves how we function and perceive our surroundings has emerged as a result of modern technology’s advancements. Human augmentation is undeniably the newest hot trend in technology, according to Gartner’s ranking of the Top 10 strategic technology trends for 2020.
In layman’s words, human augmentation is the branch of computing that deals with technologies that increase human productivity and improve or restore the capacities of the human body or mind. The improvement of human experience on a cognitive and physical level is the main goal of this phenomena. The advancements in this technology are intended to bring improvements in case of significant areas like human health, quality of life, and performance, despite the fact that the notion is still very nebulous.
The use of wearable technology by miners to improve worker safety, the adoption of data and applications to enhance learning or novel experiences, nanorobotics, and performance-improving surgery are just a few examples of its many applications.
The use of Google Glasses to see augmented visual information, next-generation cochlear implants for auditory sensing and processing, orthotics, or limb devices that improve muscle capability are some further examples of gadgets that help people have enhanced sensory capacities.
Other human-augmentation technologies support specific IT resources, such cloud computing, big data analytics, and mobile computing. These also include wearable technology such as watches and bracelets that link the human body to remote data sources that may be auditory, visual, or text-based.
Types of Human Augmentation
1. Adapting human abilities
Replication technology is human enhancement technology that recovers or duplicates common human skills. For example, these can include artificial limbs for the crippled or hearing devices for the deaf.
Replication aids in facilitating equitable possibilities for people who have suffered a terrible illness or accident, as well as for those who were born with deficiencies and encounter challenges in meeting their basic necessities. The tools used here enable their customers to receive significant psychological support.
2. Increasing human capacity
The category of supplementation includes human augmentation technology, which improves one’s capacity for action. For instance, there could be tools that artificially increase a person’s strength, vision, ability to see beyond normal boundaries, or IQ. Such human enhancement that strengthens our mental or physical limitations can revolutionise our society and improve our possibilities.
3. Beyond human capacity
Technology for human augmentation that allows us to do any phenomenon that we are physically unable to perform on our own falls under the area of exceeding augmentation. Consider the abilities of a superhero, such as the capacity to fly, the ability to breathe underwater, the ability to smell substances that are imperceptible to the human olfactory system, and so forth.
Although this type of modification may be the most intriguing to us, it is also the most futuristic and will take a lot longer to develop successfully. The majority of its current uses are tied to unique use cases, including the military or other specific businesses.
Examples of Human Augmentation
A company called Naked Prosthetics designs and creates robust, personalised prosthetics, especially for finger loss. The company wants to help those who have lost fingers by enhancing their lives and providing them with practical and usable finger prostheses.
The wearable haptic technology called Teslasuit was created as a human-to-digital interface for mimicking the experience and improving the user’s skills. The suit can regulate the wearer’s body temperature, provide haptic input, and monitor their movements. Although this technology is currently used for virtual reality immersion, the idea used in its development can also be easily applied to technology for human modification.
Untethered mixed reality device HoloLens 2 has apps and solutions that improve teamwork. With the help of this tool, the user can view and control holographic objects. The gadget can be used for a wide range of industrial and business purposes, including gaming, staff training, and 3D computer-aided design.
Cloak of Invisibility
Who hasn’t been intrigued by the idea behind Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak? We still don’t really have a totally tangible product or solution for this, but we are undoubtedly getting there. Researchers are attempting to use the techniques they have developed for making specific objects or surfaces invisible when it comes to human cloaking.
High levels of physical and cognitive human augmentation will emerge during the next ten years and spread as more people investigate personal upgrades. Employees will want to take advantage of and spread out these personal changes to better their workplace environment, creating a new “consumerization effect” that will emerge.
There are five key areas that all firms should concentrate on before implementing this technology: security, data protection, compliance with government and regulatory requirements, any potential effects on long-term mental and physical health, and major ethical concerns. It’s time to focus on how we can use this new technology in an efficient and productive way and figure out how to deal with it as it develops.