Site Index Page

Implantation Backup Article

courtesy Kathy Kasten

Tuesday August 25 2:59 PM EDT

Professor claims to receive first chip implant

By Neil Winton, Science and Technology Correspondent

READING, England (Reuters) - Professor Kevin Warwick
claimed on Tuesday to be the first person in the world to
have a computer chip surgically implanted into his body.

Warwick told a news conference that a glass capsule about
one inch long and one-tenth of an inch wide containing an
electromagnetic coil and a silicon chip was inserted into
his arm on Monday.

"It is a research experiment. I don't know how long we will
leave the implant in but it's looking at what's possible
now in terms of communicating between a computer and
myself," Warwick said.

Warwick is head of the Cybernetics Department at the
University of Reading. He demonstrated the chip in action
by walking through the front door of his department.

"Good morning, Professor Warwick. You have five new E
mails," said a computerized voice activated by the inserted

The human as computer had many applications, but also
dangers, Warwick said.

"Possibilities could be that anyone who wanted access to a
gun could do so only if they had one of these implants," he
said. "Then if they actually try and enter a school or
building that doesn't want them in there, the school
computer would sound alarms and warn people inside or even
prevent them having access.

f"The same could be true at work where employees could be
tracked in and out of the building to see when they are

"This is a technology where there are big positives but
there are also big negatives. Do we want to hand over
control to machinery or to have buildings telling us what
we can do or can't do?"

"I'm really looking at what's technically possible. I'm
excited about the future prospects, particularly the human
body communicating and interacting with a computer. There
are a lot of exciting possibilities."

Warwick said the chip was implanted by his own doctor, who
advised him to have it removed within 10 days.

There was a danger of infection, although Warwick was
taking antibiotics.

Reading University said in a statement that this was the
first chip to be surgically inserted into a human.

"It is therefore not known what effects it will have, how
well it will operate and how robust it will be. Professor
Warwick is therefore taking an enormous risk -- for the
transponder to leak or shatter within his body could be
catastrophic," the statement said.

Warwick shrugged off the dangers.

"It doesn't hurt any. I took some Nurofen just before the
operation.  It feels uncomfortable; it feels as though
there's something in my arm, but it doesn't feel

"Cybernetics is all about humans and technology
interacting. For a professor of cybernetics to become a
true Cyborg -- part man, part machine -- is therefore
rather appropriate," Warwick said.

Site Index Page