Prosthetic Digit Gets Three Thumbs Up

As humans, we have four fingers and an opposable thumb. This makes our bodies able to easily manipulate tools like a hammer or saw, or even hit the space bar when you’ve finished typing a word for the Hackster blog. This works quite well in most circumstances, but London-based product designer Dani Clode decided to explore what would happen if we had two thumbs… on each hand.

Her partially 3D-printed device is worn in three pieces, with an attachment securing the thumb to the middle of one’s hand, and a wristwatch-style section that provides power. Power transmission between them is accomplished via a pair of Bowden cables, that work in the same way that a Bike’s brake lines. Control is accomplished by a pair of pressure sensors embedded in a user’s shoes. These parts communicate via Bluetooth, avoiding extra wires between the shoes and hand/wrist assembly.

Clode sees this project as something that could be used as decoration like a tattoo or jewelry, or as even something that could act as a functional tool. She also sees this as challenging the perception of prosthetics as a replacement for limbs that have been lost, but also as an augmentation like glasses or plastic surgery.

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