Posted in biology, engineering

Bionic humans and creativity

This is somewhat of a hybrid entry, but it seems appropriate. I have collected a couple of stories that explore creativity using science and technology, but from opposite ends of the spectrum.

First: a film-maker with a fake eye has decided he wants a camera put into his fake eye. So far the only art he has created is the documentation of just how hard this seemingly simple process actually is. The film is a little cheesy, but it’s a nice exploration of incorporating technology into human beings, in this case for artistic purposes.

The second story is about a couple of teams in Europe working on creating a robotic child. This is not simply a smaller robot. They have built the robot specifically with the intent to learn. They have written a program for the robot using the dominant child/human development theories of today to see if the robot can learn to crawl, then walk, then run, use a pencil, etc.

The most interesting part (for me anyway) is that the schematics for this robo-kid are open-access and downloadable to anyone, although you have to be fairly skilled to put it all together. They are hoping that providing robotics ingenues this information will speed up the development and hopefully create new discoveries about the little tyke. While this isn’t directly an artistic endeavour, by providing others the opportunity to access and mess with the robot’s schematics gives people an artistic license to explore how they want.



Beth Kelley is an applied & digital anthropologist with an overall interest in how people engage with and are impacted by their environments and vice versa. This has manifested itself in many ways, by looking at creativity, playful spaces, built environments, and environmental enrichment, sustainability, design research, and integrative and collaborative models of learning such as through play and hands-on learning.