Send your comments and tips to firstname.lastname@example.org
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Ctr.
Boston Medical Center
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Cambridge Health Alliance
Caritas St. Elizabeth's Medical Ctr.
Children's Hospital Boston
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Joslin Diabetes Center
Mass. General Hospital
Mass. Health Law
New England Baptist Hospital
Short White Coat
Tufts-New England Medical Center
UMass Memorial Medical Center
University of Massachusetts
VA Medical Centers
A Healthy Blog
Running A Hospital
Nature Network Boston
SciBos - Corie Lok's blog
Nurse at small
Dr. Gwenn Is In
Healthy Children blog
Other Globe Blogs
Elizabeth Cooney is a health reporter for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
Boston Globe Health and Science staff:
Karen Weintraub, Deputy Health and Science Editor, and Gideon Gil, Health and Science Editor.
Short White Coat blogger Ishani Ganguli
Short White Coat blogger Jennifer Srygley
Monday, August 20, 2007
'Simon Birch' star, now MIT student, on human augmentation
Ian Michael Smith (left), star of the 1998 movie "Simon Birch" and a sophomore at MIT, tells Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert that technology such as his cochlear implant is all about "customizing your body."
Smith had just had the implant activated as a result of his increasing deafness, a side effect of Morquito's syndrome. The form of dwarfism limits his height but not his life span, the story says.
Ebert asked Smith, who is majoring in electrical engineering and computer science, about the science-fiction dream of merging human and robot.
"Weíre seeing advances in human augmentation that we had no idea 10 or 20 years ago would be possible," Smith said. "I donít think anyone ever expected cochlear implants to be as advanced today as they are now. Now we have the same sort of technology being used as visual implants to provide sight to people, and to treat Parkinsonís with brain stimulators."
"Itís not about augmenting human capability for its own sake," he said. "In my case, Iím not going to rush out and start injecting steroids just to be strong because I have no use for that. Itís about customizing your body to do what you want it to do."