'Necklace' designed to aid those with profound hearing loss.
June 13, 2001 9:00 PM   Subscribe

'Necklace' designed to aid those with profound hearing loss. Almost totally deaf and reliant on lip reading since her 20s, Sherry Cramer couldn't believe her ears in 1994 when she first wore the microphone array necklace that electrical engineering Professor Bernard Widrow and his students had designed. Listening to a CD, she could hear every note of a Rachmaninoff piano concerto as the necklace received and transmitted sound in magnetic form to her behind-the-ear hearing aid.
posted by RylandDotNet (8 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I love cyborg stuff.
A wee bit more in the vaporware dept, yet still not too far off is this.

Or, god willing, this.
posted by dong_resin at 10:48 PM on June 13, 2001

More and more, I feel like we're all living in a really well written science fiction novel. Stuff like this kicks ass.
posted by GriffX at 1:04 AM on June 14, 2001

What is not mentioned in this article is that this necklace will only really help those who had hearing at one point in the past and lost it, and whose hearing organs are still intact. I worked at a deaf theater for two years - two of the deafies (deaf-hearing world slang for deaf person) were deaf from birth, and two more were deaf from childhood because of illness. This apparatus wouldn't help them at all, unless it were connected to a cochlear implant, which is a whole different can of worms altogether.

That said, it is an amazing breakthrough for people who are losing their hearing and just need a better hearing aid. But it shouldn't be seen as a panacea.
posted by starvingartist at 6:01 AM on June 14, 2001

Very stylish.
posted by crunchland at 6:58 AM on June 14, 2001

I saw another variant of this some time ago that uses receivers that are so small, they have to be attached to the eardrum with a drop of oil. Neat.
posted by samsara at 8:41 AM on June 14, 2001

This is when I thank G-d for geeky researcher types. Absolutely cool.
posted by Dreama at 8:45 AM on June 14, 2001

I'm gonna need one of these one day, I'm glad the tech development curve is still ahead of my troubles.
posted by DiplomaticImmunity at 10:40 AM on June 14, 2001

I want one of these and I hear fine already.
posted by kindall at 11:12 AM on June 14, 2001

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