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These Real-Life Cyborgs Blur The Lines Between Human And Machine

We seem to be more intimate with technology as it becomes sleeker and more mobile. We already rely so much on our phones and other devices for pretty much everything. How long is it before technology and biology fuse together, causing us all to become cyborgs? Very soon, at least according to these robotic pioneers.

Like a real-life Jordy from Star Trek: Next Generation, Jens Naumann became the first person to receive an artificial vision system. An electronic eye is fed directly to his visual cortex, which is almost as cool as those sweet shades he gets to wear.

Scientists have inserted a rat’s brain into a little car-like machine. The brain is in full control of the car’s movements, and is technically the first rat cyborg.

Dick Cheney is still alive because a left-ventricular assist device that mechanically keeps his heart beating. This doesn’t do anything to stop the comparisons to Darth Vader.

Performance artist Stelarc once allowed internet users to control his movements through electronic muscle stimulators attached to his body.

Nigel Ackland sports the most advanced cyborg arm on the planet. He can control each finger just like on a normal hand, and can even perfectly pour a glass of water.

Kevin Warwick is a cybernetics professor at the University of Reading. He installed a chip in his own arm that allows him to control lights, doors, heaters, and even other computers.

Jesse Sullivan was one of the first cyborgs ever when he was equipped with two robotic arms he can actually control with his mind. Although he lost his original arms, his new arms can still feel heat and cold.

Artist Neil Harbisson was born without the ability to see colors. After being equipped with a special electronic eye that translates perceived colors into musical notes, he can essentially hear color. This opens up new neural pathways in his brain no other human experiences.

Jerry Jalava lost the tip of his finger in a motorcycle accident, but the computer engineer decided to not let this hinder his job. He opted to install a USB drive in his replacement finger.

Michael Chorost became completely deaf by the time he was 30, but in 2001, he had a computer installed into his head and ears that completely restored his hearing.

If I could have a robot body part, I’d get the Winter Soldier’s bionic arm from Captain America 2. Not so much to fight people, but to use its super strength to open beer bottles and stuff. It would be awesome.