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Inventing Iron Man

The Possibility of a Human Machine

E. Paul Zehr
foreword by Warren Ellis

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Tony Stark has been battling bad guys and protecting innocent civilians since he first donned his mechanized armor in the 1963 debut of Iron Man in Marvel Comics. Over the years, Stark’s suit has allowed him to smash through walls, fly through the air like a human jet, control a bewildering array of weaponry by thought alone, and perform an uncountable number of other fantastic feats. The man who showed us all what it would take to become Batman probes whether science—and humankind—is up to the task of inventing a real-life Iron Man.

E. Paul Zehr physically deconstructs Iron Man to find out how…

Tony Stark has been battling bad guys and protecting innocent civilians since he first donned his mechanized armor in the 1963 debut of Iron Man in Marvel Comics. Over the years, Stark’s suit has allowed him to smash through walls, fly through the air like a human jet, control a bewildering array of weaponry by thought alone, and perform an uncountable number of other fantastic feats. The man who showed us all what it would take to become Batman probes whether science—and humankind—is up to the task of inventing a real-life Iron Man.

E. Paul Zehr physically deconstructs Iron Man to find out how we could use modern-day technology to create a suit of armor similar to the one Stark made. Applying scientific principles and an incredibly creative mind to the question, Zehr looks at how Iron Man’s suit allows Stark to become a superhero. He discusses the mind-boggling and body-straining feats Iron Man performed to defeat villains like Crimson Dynamo, Iron Monger, and Whiplash and how such acts would play out in the real world. Zehr finds that science is nearing the point where a suit like Iron Man’s could be made. But superherodom is not just about technology. Zehr also discusses our own physical limitations and asks whether an extremely well-conditioned person could use Iron Man’s armor and do what he does.

A scientifically sound look at brain-machine interfaces and the outer limits where neuroscience and neural plasticity meet, Inventing Iron Man is a fun comparison between comic book science fiction and modern science. If you’ve ever wondered whether you have what it takes to be the ultimate human-machine hero, then this book is for you.

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Inventing Iron Man

E. Paul Zehr
foreword by Warren Ellis

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Reviews

Reviews

Like a true costumed hero, Zehr masks learning in the guise of pop culture enthusiasm... a perfect source to learn about the history of Iron Man and the strength and limits of the human body and brain.

Zehr's university-based research includes neuroplasticity, akin to neural rewiring, associated with exercise training and rehabilitation. This expertise, combined with Zehr's childlike curiosity and proficiency in martial arts, makes Inventing Iron Man—along with Becoming Batman before it—a fascinating exploration of human potential.

A unique and much recommended read for anyone with an interest in the reality of super science.

Highly commended to all who enjoy a look into the world of superheroes—but science nerds will like it, too.

The character of Iron Man represents a compelling and culturally popular interpretation of what may be possible in the future with enhanced prosthetic devices.

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About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
5.5
x
8.5
Pages
224
ISBN
9781421402260
Illustration Description
29 halftones, 12 line drawings
Table of Contents

Foreword, by Warren Ellis
Preface: The Stark Reality of Robotics
Part I: It's More Than Skin Deep: Tony learns to live inside a suit of iron
1. Origins of the Iron Knight: Bionics, Robotic Armor, and

Foreword, by Warren Ellis
Preface: The Stark Reality of Robotics
Part I: It's More Than Skin Deep: Tony learns to live inside a suit of iron
1. Origins of the Iron Knight: Bionics, Robotic Armor, and Anthropomorphic Suits
2. Building the Body with Biology: When the Man of Metal Needs to Muscle In
3. Accessing the Brain of the Armored Avenger: Can We Connect the Cranium to a Computer?
The First De cades of Iron: "He Lives! He Walks! He Conquers!"
Part II: Use It or Lose It: Will time tarnish the Golden Avenger?
4. Multitasking and the Metal Man: How Much Can Iron Man's Mind Manage?
5. Softening Up a Superhero: Why the Man with a Suit of Iron Could Get a Jelly Belly
6. Brain Drain: Will Tony's Gray Matter Give Way?
The Next De cades of Iron: "I Can Envision the Future"
Part III: Armored Avenger in Action: If we build it, what will come?
7. Trials and Tribulations of the Tin Man: What Happens When the Human Machine Breaks Down
8. Visions of the Vitruvian Man: Is Invention Really Only One Part Inspiration?
9. Deal or No Deal? Could Iron Man Exist?
Appendix: Ten Momentous Moments of the Metal Man
Bibliography
Index

Author Bio
E. Paul Zehr
Featured Contributor

E. Paul Zehr, Ph.D., M.Sc., B.P.E.

E. Paul Zehr is a professor of neuroscience and kinesiology at the University of Victoria, British Columbia, and the author of Becoming Batman: The Possibility of a Superhero, also published by Johns Hopkins. For more information about finding your inner superhero, visit www.inventingironman.com.