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Creators/Authors contains: "Zhang, Yunxiang"

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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 23, 2024
  2. While tremendous advances in visual and auditory realism have been made for virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR), introducing a plausible sense of physicality into the virtual world remains challenging. Closing the gap between real-world physicality and immersive virtual experience requires a closed interaction loop: applying user-exerted physical forces to the virtual environment and generating haptic sensations back to the users. However, existing VR/AR solutions either completely ignore the force inputs from the users or rely on obtrusive sensing devices that compromise user experience. By identifying users' muscle activation patterns while engaging in VR/AR, we design a learning-based neural interface for natural and intuitive force inputs. Specifically, we show that lightweight electromyography sensors, resting non-invasively on users' forearm skin, inform and establish a robust understanding of their complex hand activities. Fuelled by a neural-network-based model, our interface can decode finger-wise forces in real-time with 3.3% mean error, and generalize to new users with little calibration. Through an interactive psychophysical study, we show that human perception of virtual objects' physical properties, such as stiffness, can be significantly enhanced by our interface. We further demonstrate that our interface enables ubiquitous control via finger tapping. Ultimately, we envision our findings to push forward researchmore »towards more realistic physicality in future VR/AR.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  3. Abstract

    Bacteria‐powered biobatteries using multiple microbial species under well‐mixed conditions demonstrate a temporary performance enhancement through their cooperative interaction, where one species produces a resource that another species needs but cannot synthesize. Despite excitement about the artificial microbial consortium, those mixed populations cannot be robust to environmental changes and have difficulty generating long‐lasting power because individual species compete with their neighbors for space and resources. In nature, microbial communities are organized spatially as multiple species are separated by a few hundred micrometers to balance their interaction and competition. However, it has been challenging to define a microscale spatial microbial structure in miniature biobatteries. Here, an innovative technique to design microscale spatial structures with microbial multispecies for significant improvement of the biobattery performance is demonstrated. A solid‐state layer‐by‐layer agar‐based culture platform is proposed, where individual microcolonies separately confined in microscale agar layers form a 3‐D spatial structure allowing for the exchange of metabolites without physical contact between the individual species. The optimized microbial co‐cultures are determined from selected hypothesis‐driven naturally‐occurring bacteria. Vertically and horizontally structured 3‐D microbial communities in solid‐state agar‐based microcompartments demonstrate the practicability of the biobattery, generating longer and greater power in a more self‐sustaining manner than monocultures andmore »other mixed populations.

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