Due to a variety of recent innovations in bio-mechanical technology, prosthetic limbs are becoming more functional, better connected to the human body, and, attitude-wise, a lot more Furiosa. But most of the breakthrough prosthetic arms and hands in recent years were just that: arms and hands. For product designer and researcher Kaylene Kau however, a replacement arm and hand was only a starting point on a winding journey that ultimately lead to… a tentacle. A tentacle that works better than expected and would also, aesthetically speaking, make Davy Jones quite proud.
Kau developed the unique prosthetic arm several years back while she was an undergraduate student at the University of Washington, and it was subsequently posted to Coroflot. Kau says she was driven by one of her professors to “to push the boundaries of current upper-limb prosthetic design,” and the result of that request coupled with her fascinating and quirky imagination—seriously, check out some of her other projects like “Birds on the Street”—is a limb that both Turanga Leela’s mother and a Yivo-controlled Fry would be proud of. (Side note: there are a lot of tentacles in Futurama.)
In the clip above, Kau discusses the prosthetic, noting that it received mixed reviews from people who’ve seen it, sometimes earning praise for its form, while other times eliciting some creepy vibes. She also notes that in its prototypical form, the tentacle uses a wire to fold around objects that it’s grasping, whereas in a production model, it would use a motor that would, presumably, be connected to a person’s nervous system.
The basic functionality of the tentacular appendage is undeniable however, as it seems to work perfectly well for grasping and holding various objects. Kau says on her website that this is the primary function of a prosthetic limb, at least when it’s coupled with a dominant, normally functioning biological limb. All we can say is:
But do you love the tentacle?! Let us know what you think of this prosthetic limb design in the comments below!
Images: YouTube / TravisKOMONews