Interview with Thomas Massie
Massie grew up in Eastern Kentucky. His mother is a nurse and his father a beer distributor. They allowed him to explore everything and his favorite subjects were math and science. Massie attended MIT where he majored in engineering. He attended MIT because he felt he could get involved in lab work from the beginning as a freshman. He later formed a company, SensAble Devices, based on his invention the Phantom. Massie built the Phantom in the lab in 3 months and it required programming, circuits, and pulleys. The Phantom works by placing your finger in the thimble and moving it forward to touch the wall where a force field is created. The computer tracks where the finger is and a red line indicates the progress. Massie uses the example of inserting a needle into a brain tumor. The Phantom's applications include training surgeons, enable the blind to use computers, and permit engineers to create virtual prototypes and feel the models. Massie's favorite invention is the car and his hobbies include radio controlled cars, boats and planes.
Interview with James McLurkin
McLurkin was born in Baldwin, New York. His mother is a speech therapist and his father works for AT & T. McLurkin comes from a strong technical background and enjoyed playing with erector sets, tinker toys, and Lincoln logs. While in high school, McLurkin built a robot and liked science. He would like to remain in "academia" to conduct research and would like to sell his ants. Concludes interview with a demonstration of ants playing "tag."
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Massie/McLurkin Innovative Lives Presentation and Interviews, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.