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Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Awards

Boot Camp feature for Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Popular Mechanics introduces its Breakthrough Awards. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Taking a page from its rival, Popular Science magazine, Popular Mechanics, at age 103, is out with its first annual awards. The Breakthrough Awards. Editor in Chief Jim Meigs…

"We're picking the people and products that we think are really changing the world. Everything from inventors working on new types of solar energy to new breakthroughs in consumer products that you can buy today."

Among those being honored are Hugh Herr at MIT's Media Lab who has created a microprocessor controlled artificial knee….and John Donoghue at Brown University….who has developed a system called BrainGate…

"Which is literally an implantable chip that allows people that are severely handicapped, paralyzed, to control a computer strictly through their thoughts. And the potential here to enable the handicapped to really re-engage with the world is absolutely enormous. And the idea that you could just think about moving a cursor, moving a mechanical hand with your brain, without any motor control whatsoever, and accomplish those things, is really extraordinary."

Among the consumer products honored by the magazine as breakthroughs…. Apple's OS X Tiger, Microsoft's Xbox 360, AMD's Athlon 64 X2 processor, the Tom Tom Go navigation system and Sling Media's Slingbox. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.