Terminally-ill roboticist on his way to becoming the world’s first full cyborg – Firstpost

tech2 News StaffOct 17, 2019 10:11:15 IST

An American scientist battling a muscle-wasting disease hasannounced that heis in-transitionto become "the world's first full cyborg." The procedure is a part of a life-extensionexperiment involving the scientist a world-renowned roboticist whowas told he had a year to live.

Approaching age 60, Dr Peter Scott-Morgan was diagnosed with motor neurone disease, alsoknown as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).ALSis currently untreatable. It causes muscle weakness, and often, visible wasting away ofthe patient's musculature.

Now, Scott-Morgan, who was given until2019 to live, is on an attemptingto have all his biological organs replaced withmachinery. Once a full cyborg, Scott-Morgan will be able to controlan artificial intelligenceavatar that resembles his own face before his degenerativedisease consumes his vital organs.

Peter Scott-Morgan's avatar introducing 'Peter 2.0'. Image: Embody Digital/YouTube

Scott-Morganrecently completed one of the first,critical steps on this journey: the removal ofhisvoicebox.Withouta voicebox, salivacan find its way into his lungs and cause him to suffocate a big concern with ALS patients. He has also had a feeding tubeinserted directly into his stomach, a catheter into his bladder and a colostomy bag directly onto his colon so he no longer needs to eat or excrete with any conscious muscle control.

The removal of his voicebox and movement viaatop-endwheelchair which he said on Twitter is'brilliantly engineered',allows him to stand, lie flat and go fast, havebrought hima step closerin his transition from livingahuman life to surviving in a robotic one.

He has alsocreated an avatar ofhimselfbeforethe first visible signsof ALS set in a"face" with a range of facial expressions thatScott-Morgan will continue to use as the disease progresses and he loses control of his expressions and facial movements.

Part of the scientist's full cyborg technologyis a revolutionary eye-tracking technology that will allow him to control multiple computerswithhis eyes alone. Among several other uses, thisgives Scott-Morgancontrol of his own electronic bed and a hoist that helps him move around on his own.

A daybefore he underwent thelaryngectomy (voice-box removal), Scott-Morganannounced the endof 'Peter 1.0' and thestartof his life as a 'Full Cyborg' in the making as 'Peter 2.0'.

"This is my last post as Peter 1.0. Tomorrow (Thursday, 10 October) I trade my voice for potentially decades of life as we complete the final medical procedure for my transition to Full Cyborg, the month I was told statistically I would be dead," he said in a tweet. "I'm not dying, I'm transforming. Oh, how I love science," he added.

With allthe procedures he has lined up, their associated risks, and being terminally-ill, Scott-Morgansaysheisn't interested in surviving ALS he intends to 'thrive' as a cybernetic being. Thisvision is far from just a dream for the roboticist "we are within touching distance of changing - everything. I'm not dying - I'm transforming!" he has said on his website.

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Terminally-ill roboticist on his way to becoming the world's first full cyborg - Firstpost

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