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You don’t even need a hand to fire this awesome Nerf gun

The primary weapon in many a backyard battle, the Nerf gun occupies a special place in the hearts of people across the globe.

Now the good folks at Hackerloop have taken the sponge-shooting firearm to a whole new level, creating one that can be attached to a missing limb and fired via muscle contraction.

The bionic Nerf attaches to the user’s forearm, with a DIY MyoWare muscle sensor built around an Arduino circuit board that uses electromyography (EMG) to evaluate the amount of electrical activity generated in the user’s body.

According to the Mayo Clinic, EMG has traditionally been used in medicine for diagnosing neuromuscular disorders. However, in recent years it has increasingly been used in the field of robotics, specifically human prosthetics.

So when the electrical current detected in the forearm goes over a certain amount, the gun senses it, pulling the trigger and firing off a foam bullet. That’s pretty damn cool:

Hackerloop is a self-described collective of “hackers, makers, tinkerers, engineers and robots” based in Paris. In addition to the bionic Nerf gun, they have made other rad stuff such as a rocket launcher drone, and an RFID implant.

Valentino Squirelo, co-founder of Hackerloop, told Motherboard that the inspiration for the bionic blaster came from a string of jokes involving a friend who had lost a hand. Hopefully the result has given Squirelo’s mate a better chance at winning office battles.

The team at Hackerloop seem to enjoy a good laugh. Last year, they partnered up with Ubisoft to create the Nosulus Rift – a wearable device that allows gamers to smell.

In what looks like an April Fools’ Joke (but surprisingly isn’t), the Nosulus will reportedly go on sale with the new South Park game, The Fractured But Whole.

“In South Park: The Fractured But Whole, you are playing the new kid in town, a hero. And one of your special abilities is really the power of your ass. The only way to really help people experience that strength is to really make sure that they can feel it. And that means getting really close,” Jason Schroeder, Ubisoft San Francisco senior producer, told Tech Times.

“This time we wanted to come up with the most authentic, most immersive way for players to be able to experience the power of the new kid.”

The game promises to give users the experience “exactly as if someone farted in your face”. It’s all explained in this very tongue-in-cheek promo video.

Wow. Please, stick to Nerf guns, guys! The world isn’t ready for Smell-O-Vision.

About the author

Stefan is an Adelaide-based freelance writer. In his spare time, he plays tennis badly, collects vinyl and brushes up on his Mandarin. Follow Stefan on Twitter

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