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Peter: The Human Cyborg this week on FOUR CORNERS

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Dr Peter Scott-Morgan is a renowned scientist and robotics expert. In 2017 he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease (MND), an incurable illness that attacks the body’s nerves causing muscles to waste away.

As the condition progresses, a person becomes ‘locked in’ – unable to move but still fully alert. Faced with this devastating diagnosis, Peter decided to use his skills to change his future. 

“There is no technology that I would not consider. This is cyborg territory and I intend to be a human guinea pig to see just how far we can turn science fiction into reality.” 

“I came up with this idea to throw the rule book out, bring technology in, try to make life not just for me but for everybody with MND – transformed.”  Dr Peter Scott-Morgan 

Confronted with the news that he may only have two years left to live, he set out to find and apply cutting edge technology to not only extend his life, but to keep the essence of who he is as the disease progresses. 

“The biggest challenge with producing a cloned voice is the sheer variation that people have when they use their own voices. Our voice is like a fantastic instrument and the problem with that variation is precisely the thing that makes it hard to copy it.”  Speech synthesis technologist 

The film follows Peter as he investigates how to digitally preserve his voice and undergoes lifesaving surgery that will silence him forever. It captures precious moments where the technology he has put his faith in, gives him back his sense of self. 

“I am unprepared for the emotion…it is quite extraordinary, it really is. Just being able to stand and look around. It is amazing, it really is.”   Dr Peter Scott-Morgan 

In this deeply personal film, Peter’s quest to become a self-described ‘cyborg’ and his determination to live is truly inspirational.  

“I will never stop being human but maybe I will help to change what it means to be human. It is a hugely exciting time to be alive. Now is not the end of anything, now is when the fun begins.”   Dr Peter Scott-Morgan 

Peter – The Human Cyborg, a Channel Four production, goes to air on Monday 10th at 8.30pm.

It is replayed on Tuesday 11th May at 1.00pm and Wednesday 12th at 11.20pm. It can also be seen on ABC NEWS channel on Saturday at 8.10pm AEST, ABC iview and at abc.net.au/4corners. 

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