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Biohacking, the Body Modification that Turns You into a Cyborg

Biohacking, the Body Modification that Turns You into a Cyborg

Are we ready for LED-powered tattoos and implants and magnetic fingers?

Body modifications do it again as they take it up a notch with bio hacking that turns the wearer into a real-life Iron Man. Well, sort of.

Biohacking is basically DIY biology. It's all about messing with the way things are wired in an effort to create something new without needing a fancy degree. I'm not going to go into the more complicated aspects, but rather I will discuss the subset of biohacking that heavily focuses on aesthetics rather than practical purposes. 

Northstar V1. (Photo by Ryan O’Shea of Grinhouse Wetwear.) #cyborg #bodymodifications #biohacking #science #diy #bodymods #implants #grindhouse

Most of the people who practice biohacking to incorporate it in body modifications test the limits of the human body and what it could be capable of with some adjustments. After all, they're given the freedom to do as they please without being weighed down by the relevance of their design. After all, biohacking in body mods currently consists mostly of LED and magnets – both of which are purely out of aesthetic purpose and shock value.

Pictured, Tim Cannon and Shawn Sarver in the basement workshop of Grindhouse Wetware. (Photo by Andrew Russell for Tribune-Review) #cyborg #bodymodifications #biohacking #science #diy #bodymods #implants #grindhouse

Grindhouse Wetware, an open source biotechnology startup company, have been revolutionizing the biohacking field of body modifications by working towards a common goal – augmenting humanity using safe, affordable, open source technology. They cater to the ideas of the body mods enthusiast community, such as lighting up a tattoo.

Photo of Northstar V1, via Grindhouse on Facebook. #cyborg #bodymodifications #biohacking #science #diy #bodymods #implants #grindhouse

One of their successful projects is Northstar V1, an LED implant which is activated by placing a magnet over it. It lights up for ten seconds and then goes back into sleep mode until it's activated again. The implant can light up to 10,000 times before it runs out of non-rechargeable batteries, at which point the wearer may have them taken out or keep it the way it is. 

Grindhouse hopes it will pave the way for more advanced and functional augmentations. Apparently, they're back at the drawing board for an improved Northstar V1 chip that features “rechargeable device that adds gesture recognition and Bluetooth capabilities, enabling users to control electronic devices with hand movements, as well as add patterns or color variations to LED.”

(Warning: Graphic) Here's a small sneak peek of what goes on at the Grindhouse lab.

Tim Cannon, a software developer and biohacker, is well-known as a ‘real-life cyborg’ for his numerous implants and mods. After co-founding Grindhouse Wetware, Cannon became the first person to be implanted with his company's biometric sensor known as Circadia. It recorded his body temperature and sent the data to his mobile phone. He later had it removed after deeming the achievement as a success and then volunteering as a subject once again for Grindhouse's Northstar V1 in late 2015.

Pictured, Tim Cannon testing out Circadia, via Motherboard of Vice. #timcannon #cyborg #bodymodifications #biohacking #science #diy #bodymods #implants #grindhouse

The biohacker currently has a radio-frequency identification (RFID) tag in his hand and magnetic implants in a finger, wrist, and tragus, hence, the ‘cyborg’ label. Read more about biohacking and tattoos here.

The first wearers of the Northstar V1 implants by Grindhouse Wetware (#squadgoals). (Photo by Ryan O’Shea of Grinhouse Wetwear.) #cyborg #bodymodifications #biohacking #science #diy #bodymods #implants #grindhouse

Written byXavier

When she's not writing for Tattoodo, Xavier likes experimenting with art and organizing local music shows. We're kidding, she's probably asleep. Follow her on Instagram @claudia_strife

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