Virtual Caveman Becomes Humankind's Newest Slave

Illustration for article titled Virtual Caveman Becomes Humankinds Newest Slave

Cavemen aren't just useful for stupid Brendan Frasier movies and Geico commercials. Scientists at the University of Calgary created a giant virtual hospital patient called CAVEman—CAVE is an acronym for cave automated virtual environment—and made him a guinea pig for all things anatomical.

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Illustration for article titled Virtual Caveman Becomes Humankinds Newest Slave

By collaborating with graphic artists, the scientists made 3-D images of everything from the funny bone to the kidney to each nerve in your brain. Then, they recreated these body parts using a projector. CAVEman started off as someone who got free massages all the time—he was originally created for massage therapists in training—but now he's become the virtual environment for MRIs and biopsies. The future doesn't look so hot for him, either: in the next phase, they're going to put tactile feedback sensors on him and make him simulate respiration and blood flow so they can test cutting edge treatments on him before operating on real humans.

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Sucks to be you, CAVEman.

Images by Christoph W. Sensen and Manami Yajima for the University of Calgary

Inside a Cave [Popular Science]

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DISCUSSION

collinxvii
papercup mixmaster

Yeah. CAVE stands for cave...how very GNU of them. Also, I'm confused. Is he just projected? Onto what? Is he a working precursor to the holodeck, or Arnolod Rimmer? Where are they putting these tactile sensors?