Lucy McRae: How can technology transform the human body?

26 Oct

Lucy McRae: How can technology transform the human body?

EdTalksTed is under reconstruction.  Simpler, clearer, and possibly more rant filled.  Let’s begin!


Date Filmed: April 2012

Length: 3 minutes, 59 seconds

Total Views so far: 585,968

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Transforming the Human Body

1. Human sourced Perfume is already here.

It isn’t always the sweetest but the human body is a stink machine that is firing off on all cylinders every time we hit the stairs, become stressed or venture to eat a pound of the super hot black mamba wings. 

But it’s exactly one person’s stench that becomes another person’s pheromone of seduction.  For whatever reason, perspiration, aka the production of fluids secreted by the sweat glands, has already been known to be a traditional trigger of attraction.  Finding the correct level for the particular nose is one of the greater quandaries.  We all love the smell of bubblegum, but working at the candy factory where you need to wear surgical masks or die from ‘popcorn lung’ is something entirely different.

More about Popcorn lung disease:

Its not that an overdose of human sweat is going to kill you, but when surrounded on a bus on a sweltering hot day, the will to live drops dramatically.

2) The nose knows.. . 

Some people smell nice when they spray three squirts of perfume on their skin.  That same person might also be causing elderly people to choke and gasp in absolute terror from the artificial stench.

For many reasons, humans have various degrees of sensitivity in their noses and this changes with age, certain habits such as smoking and even possible mental disorders. 

Blind people do not necessarily have a keener sense of smell, nor do those trained in quality control or safety inspection necessary have a better ‘sniffer’.  If anything they might have a more trained nose and have a better idea of identification and nasal ‘direction sense’.

If sniffing perfume is something you’d like to do as a job, there’s instructions on how to make use of your nose as a skillset on Ehow.

There is a great article about our ability smell things that can be found here:

3.  McRae has a website dedicated to swallowable perfume  located at

Although the product isn’t yet on the market there is a downloadable press release pdf on the website available that covers the general ideas behind Swallowable Parfum.

Looking at products that are in abundance in the world today already, we know that eating certain type of curry will come out in our sweat.  Likewise, it’s already known that a high protein, low carbohydrate diet leads to sweat stinking like ammonia.

If McRae is finding a proper blend of various food techniques to adjust our levels of smellitude, then that would be something fantastically clever.

If you’re just looking to find a way to lower your stink meter, there is an article on Yahoo might help.

4. Technology transforming the Human body is exceptionally fashionable

The art and costumes McRae shows are provocative to the eye, there’s something incredibly eye catching about the images that went across the screen during her Talk. 

And although most of those art pieces might be a little too extreme to wear to the office on Monday, technology has already made it’s way onto the human body. 

Glasses, eye contacts and watches are typical pieces of technology that are on our body for very much most of the day.  Clothing itself, is a constantly changing technology that we take for granted.  It is the fact that we take all these items as everyday devices that we forget the beauty behind their design and sophistication.

Currently there is a trend to include even more powerful tools onto our body that we can use for work or play.  These devices not only might transform the human body but might very well transform society as we know it.

For instance, the step into science fiction world with Google’s Glass Explorer.  When we can pull data on virtually anything we see, the world not only becomes more interesting but possibly more informed.

For more on Google Glass Explorer, check out their presentation at Google I/O in San Francisco.

And although Google’s device is designed to be useful, sometimes the human cyborg hybrid isn’t useful at all.

NeuroWear “Necomimi”, the mind controlled Cat Ears:

And who hasn’t wished they had cat ears?

This device isn’t just some hypothetical or future piece of technology, it’s on sale right now.

That site is in Japanese so it might be difficult to navigate.  The same cat ears are easily found on Ebay too.  (Retails for about $200 dollars)

5. Augmenting the body vs Au Naturale might create a new class of society

As technologies continue to develop over time, there is a very real possibility that there might create a divide in society.

It is occurring already, an urban segregation where half the population is armed with smartphones and have a 24 connection to the internet while the other half lives in dismal ignorance without ever knowing what a Nyan cat is.

(I’m just kidding of course, everyone knows who Nyan Cat is.  I’m not even going to bother listing a link)

The real question is whether this divide will be based off of entertainment value, amount of extra disposable income or actual needs of the individual involved.  The guy with robot eyes gets a free internet connection but is it worth poking your own eyes out for?

There is an amazing student film exactly about this topic, but for the love of Google I can’t find it. 

So here’s Nyan cat instead:

Be generous and share,


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Posted by on October 26, 2012 in Uncategorized



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