DAILY INNOVATION BRIEF by Maryanne Kane, Journalist


By Journalists Edward Kane & Maryanne Kane 


                                    Source: Cambridge University

  • In the UK, scientists at Cambridge University have developed a 3rd thumb that enables you to pick up objects with one hand.  Why after millions of years of humans having 10 fingers would you need an extra one?   Here are some key facts:
  • The 3rd thumb is a controllable, prosthetic device that attaches to the edge of the right hand
  • Allows the user to pick up objects, open bottles, even peel a banana with 1 hand
  • As to why??, the scientists say "it advances our motor capabilities beyond current biological limits"
  • Device is controlled by pressure sensor under each big toe and fits into the shoes
  • Comes in different sizes for kids and adults
  • Nearly 99% of the 600 people who tested it learned how to deftly use it in a minute or so
  • The scientists say it's particularly helpful for amputees
  • It's called augmentation technology
  • The scientists haven't disclosed when they will make the 3rd thumb available to the public and the cost
  • The big question:  would you want a 3rd thumb?


                                                                        Source:  Stock

  • There's an astounding body of new science on how animals communicate with each other.  Their methods are sophisticated and complex, including using sound, chemical cues, touch and visual signals.   Here are some key examples:
  • Dolphins:  use their unique, signatures whistles, clicks and body movements to communicate
  • Elephants: use low-frequency rumbles that travel long distances through the ground to stay in touch with fellow elephants miles away.  They also use their trunks & ears to communicate
  • Apes & chimps:  use a mix of vocalizations, facial expressions and gestures to communicate
  • Whales: communicate with each other through their complex, melodic songs and clicks
  • Crows: with their cackles and caws send messages of welcome and warning.  New science also tells us they can count up to 4 using their caws
  • Bees: use a "waggle dance" to alert the hive to new nectar & where it's at.  New research also tells us they, too, can count.
  • Recent animal behavioral research is demonstrating that "All Creatures Great and Small" are vibrantly involved in fascinating conversations with their fellow species
  • One wonders what animals are saying about us? Some humans look at animals & say it's just a dumb animal!  Maybe animals are looking at some humans and saying the same!.

For more news stories like this:

"Daily Innovation Brief"© By Edward Kane


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