Robotic Arms Controlled By Your….. Feet?

The days of the third hand’s dominance of workshops the world over is soon coming to an end. For those moments when only a third hand is not enough, a fourth is there to save the day.

Dubbed MetaLimbs and developed by a team from the [Inami Hiyama Laboratory] at the University of Tokyo and the [Graduate School of Media Design] at Keio University, the device is designed to be worn while sitting — strapped to your back like a knapsack — but use while standing stationary is possible, if perhaps a little un-intuitive. Basic motion is controlled by the position of the leg — specifically, sensors attached to the foot and knee — and flexing one’s toes actuates the robotic hand’s fingers. There’s even some haptic feedback built-in to assist anyone who isn’t used to using their legs as arms.

The team touts the option of customizeable hands, though a soldering iron attachment may not be as precise as needed at this stage. Still, it would be nice to be able to chug your coffee without interrupting your work.

It’s rather enviable that they are taking a productive route with this tech instead of the obvious super villain solution and attaching lasers to MetaLimbs’ arms.

[via /r/Robotics]

12 thoughts on “Robotic Arms Controlled By Your….. Feet?

  1. If you’re unfortunate enough to wind up losing both legs right at the groin… you can be supplied a wheelchair and still be largely independent.
    If instead, you lost both arms right at the shoulder … you just had to make do using your feet, chin and mouth.

    This invention might help change that.

  2. I would definitely hold the board with robo and and the soldering iron with my real hands, but very interesting. It could be useful mounted to a desk or chair. Wonder how much training would be needed to type on a keyboard ..

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