The Real Bionic Man

After Hugh Herr lost both of his legs, he invented a robotic foot that allows amputees to walk, dance, and run. His goal: tapping into the nervous system with a true bionic limb. 

In those devastating early days after the operation, Hugh Herr had a recurring dream. He was running through the cornfields behind his parents’ house in rural Pennsylvania, going impossibly fast, the sun and the wind on his face, almost flying. The ineffable sensation of freedom remains vivid decades later. Then the 17-year-old would wake up to the stumps of his legs below his sheets and remember: Both his limbs had been amputated five inches below the knee. The doctors said he would ...

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