We had mentioned earlier in this space about the Jaipur Foot Organization, which has helped millions of patients in India and around as the world’s largest provider of low-cost prosthetic devices. We had also mentioned the initiative by a group of MIT students helping to improve the Jaipur Foot design and also to reduce production costs, making the technology even more accessible.
The Hindu today ran a feature on M-Lab, short for Mobility Lab, housed within MIT, whose students were behind the above mentioned innovation. The article also highlights other interesting initiatives undertaken within the M-Lab and profiles its founder Amy Smith, who is also a MacArthur Genius Grantee. Below is an excerpt:
The M-lab mantra is simple: cleverly designed, locally made mobility devices can help the physically challenged get around and do more – not become charity cases. This semester, students made prototypes of wheelchair attachments: a tow-cart to haul medium-size loads, a small fold-out table to display products at the market or, in the case of schoolchildren, the ability to do homework sitting upright.
[Photo courtesy: The Hindu]
Update: I found this interesting TED talk by Amy Smith. Check it out!