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#WorldCup Ceremony Highlight: Robotic Mind-Controlled Exoskeleton


Personally, I was not impressed with yesterday’s World Cup Opening Ceremony at Corinthians Arena in Sao Paulo, Brazil. What was impressive was the first kick from a paralyzed volunteer wearing a robotic mind-controlled exoskeleton. Those 7 seconds marked a historic moment for technology and science.

According to the BBC, Juliano Pinto is a 29-year-old with complete paralysis of the lower trunk. His robotic exoskeleton was created by a team of more than 150 researchers led by Brazilian neuroscientist Dr. Miguel Nicolelis of Duke University. The exoskeleton uses a cap placed on the volunteer’s head and picks up brain signals that are relayed back to a computer in the exoskeleton’s backpack.

Pinto kicked the official ball a short distance along by the touchline.

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About the Author'

Camila is a writer and community manager for Tech Cocktail in Miami. She has been heavily active in South Florida’s tech startup community, where she is a co-host of a local radio show called pFunkcast. Camila previously worked at Greenpeace International and the Organization of the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in various communication roles. A proud Brazilian who spent most of he life in Peru, she is passionate about traveling and documentaries.


One Response to “#WorldCup Ceremony Highlight: Robotic Mind-Controlled Exoskeleton”



    Oh God, Allie. I know what this is like. I want to tell my own story.It happened to me when I was awake, just renaidg a book on the floor. Suddenly something HIT me. I was stunned, but the first thing I felt when my sense returned was a sharp, sucking void in my chest. My reaction to this was absolute fear. I shrieked and moaned like a specter, robbed of what must have been my soul.I wasn’t just sad, I was TERRIFIED that I was sad. How did this happen? What is the nature and origin of this feeling so strong that it crushes everything else? Thinking about it made the pain that much worse, because I had less mental energy left to dull the pain. But I kept pushing on, hoping that if I could get the answer, it would somehow be the key to warding the void away forever.After months of psychiatric visits (that helped) and pills (that did nothing), I slowly realized that this ‘depressions’ is actually rather simple, perhaps more so than I wanted my adversary to be. Depression is caused by an imbalance of chemicals in the brain, and it feels like all of your happiness and motivation is gone. It’s so strong it chases all thoughts out of your head (like most overwhelming emotions), and thinking about it makes it stronger (like emotions in general).That’s it. Nothing left to think about, and no reason to think about it. Perfect excuse to never think about it again. Every time I caught myself analyzing my depression, I told myself I was wasting time, and forced myself to stop. I got really good at this, and it developed into a weird kind of mental resource management.Now, years later, I’ve pretty much mastered it. Though there are some lingering effects of the damage it’s caused. I never feel emotions to the extend I expect, which means I’m always disappointed by what I feel. This is probably because the overwhelming sadness and fear chased out all other emotions for so long, they’ve become stunted, like a man who goes blind after years in total dark.I guess I’ll have to do things that make me feel anything but sad and scared in order to bring myself up to speed. Maybe I’ll try really hard to succeed in college, do great things, build up some confidence. Then all will be repaired.\* REPOST: I added spaces to each paragraph. It looks better *\

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