(The first of my posts on haptics is here. Some posts in this series are technical, some are interviews, some are essays; all are handy and some are touching.)
To truly understand haptics, one must be aware of those glorious, sensitive tools that are always at arm’s length.
"The human hand is an engineering marvel. There is no more impressive example of functional anatomy. It can grab and release, caress and defend. Learn karate, and you can break bricks with it. It’s a mechanism of precision and flexibility. A maestro can play the piano and the violin with the same hand. It’s a way of seeing. Close your eyes, and you can identify almost anything you touch. It’s an organ of sensuality—the fingers have more nerve endings than almost any other part of the body—and an organ of expression and communication. Not for nothing has Dr. Kodi Azari made the hand—its function, its reconstruction, and its transplantation—his life’s work." “I’m not a religious person, but if there’s any evidence of divine intervention, it has to be the human hand,” he says. “It’s perfect.”
-Amy Wallace writing for Los Angeles Magazine, March 20, 2017. Her article is highly recommended, for anyone. It continues...
Azari, who is 48, is the surgical director of the Hand Transplant Program at UCLA, where he’s worked since 2008. The field is still in its relative infancy. The first hand transplant to achieve prolonged success was performed 18 years ago in Louisville; by 2015, fewer than 85 procedures had been undertaken worldwide. But Azari is at the forefront. He’s traveled the country as one of the lead surgeons in five hand transplants conducted at the University of Pittsburgh and at Johns Hopkins University, including the first double-hand transplant and the first arm transplant performed in the United States. Then, in 2011, he and a team of 16 others did the first hand transplant west of the Rockies, at UCLA. The recipient was Emily Fennell, a 26-year-old single mom who’d lost her right hand in a traffic accident."
The complete article: https://www.lamag.com/longform/the-hollywood-exec-and-the-hand-transplant-that-changed-his-life/ The Hollywood Exec and the Hand Transplant That Changed His Life In just 30 hours, a superfit reality TV producer went from the top of his game to the precipice of death. What happened next would teach him everything about grace, resolve, and the power of love.
Gloves in space: this article, from 2009, details some of NASA’s requirements for hand coverings. https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn18166-nasa-seeks-its-one-true-glove/