Our Innovative Technology series is dedicated to bringing you the latest news and breakthroughs in mobility device design, medical breakthroughs, and more. Whether you are using a wheelchair, walker, scooter or power chair, keep checking back to the HDS Medallion Blog to keep up on the newest innovations in the world of disability technology!
In the first part of our Hot Trends analysis, we told you all about the ReWalk Personal 6.0, a fascinating exoskeleton system that redefines the concept of a mobility device. However, exoskeletons and unique new devices like the WHILL and TEK-RMD aren't the only companies where innovation is taking place. New technology offers new opportunities to improve the lives of people with disabilities. The second part of our Hot Trends feature focuses on two examples from two companies at the cutting edge of adaptive innovation.
Regardless of individual design, all adaptive technology is designed with a goal of offering more control to a person in need. There are many day-to-day tasks that may be more difficult or even impossible for others, and they aren't just related to mobility. These can be the inability to totally perform daily tasks most of us take for granted. For example, diminished use of arms or hands can limit the ability to feed yourself. Fortunately, adaptive technology exists to counter or supplement such limitations. We personally saw the Obi dining robot work at a recent tradeshow. It's a great example of innovative technology really helping.
The Obi, created by DESiN, is designed to allow those who require assistance with meals to achieve independent control of the process. Don't let the device's streamlined design fool you. The simple exterior belies the impressive technology within, allowing the user to customize the feeding process in thousands of ways, and that's not hyperbole. According to their literaature and website, the device can literally accommodate thousands of delivery options!
The device can also be paired with a number of control devices, depending on the individual's need. Adaptive feeding technology exists to allow a person to eat what they want, when they want, without relying heavily on someone else. With the Obi, there's more freedom than ever before. We watched a demonstration and were impressed with the fine motion movements possible. The inventor/designer is an engineer who wanted to help an older family member gain more dignity and capability to feed themselves.
If the Obi shows us one way a robotic arm can improve a person's life, Kinova Robotics wants to show us more. Kinova is using their industry-leading technology to create advanced robotic arms designed for power chairs. Designed to work on a variety of power chair models, Kinova offers free on-site consultation and ongoing support to ensure that their customers are getting the optimal experience from these remarkable devices.These arms are designed to either assist a person move their own arm, or to act as a surrogate arm altogether, with a number of customization options available.
Kinova's robotic arms offer an exceptionally human experience. These aren't simple remote-controlled devices designed just to open doors or lift simple objects. The advanced design makes these arms capable of detailed tasks, and are sensitive enough to safely handle objects as fragile as eggs according to the company. The arms are lightweight, and designed to attach in a way that does not increase the original profile of the power chair. For someone with limited use of their arms, these robotic arms can offer the ability to manipulate the world around them in a way they otherwise could not. In the world of adaptive technology, that's the most important goal, and Kinova has done just that. Although we did not have the time to watch all the many different ways these arms could help, we were impressed by what we saw. Occasionally we find women/girls who badly want a stylish HDS Medallion bag unable to reach into it due to arm or hand motion limitations. This arm could probably do that easily.
The fascinating devices we've covered in this feature are just a few examples in the ever-expanding adaptive technology industry. As new tech breakthroughs are found, companies like DESiN, Kinova, ReWalk and more will continue their mission to use them to improve the lives of people with disabilities. All of us here at HDS Medallion Designer CarryAll Bags for Mobility Devices truly believe in that goal as well, and we can't wait to see what amazing new ideas these innovative companies come up with next!
For more details and ordering information for the Obi dining robot, visit MeetObi.com. For more information or to schedule a consultation with Kinova Robotics, visit KinovaRobotics.com.
We want to know what adaptive technology you use that's improved your life! Contact us and let us know your favorites, so we can highlight them in future Innovative Technology features!