Re: One of my favourite films.
I was just thinking we pretty much have the tech in Star Wars where Luke Skywalker gets a prosthetic hand after Darth Vader cuts the original off. We can 3D print a working hand for you and connect the servos on it up to the muscles you would use to operate it normally in your forearm.
Trying to make them look natural just gets into uncanny valley/autons from Dr Who territory so the kids who get them get to choose the theme. Some get their sports team colours, others get Disney or Transformer etc themes or just lightning bolts. This means they have cool hands which make the other kids fascinated instead of repulsed.
We also now have surgical robots. At the moment they are controlled by human surgeons and just help to make their movements much finer and steadier. But in time they will be autonomous driven by expert AI systems. We are close to that.
Skin which is warmed slightly is also in development so realistic prosthetics which even feel natural if you shake hands are almost here.
Star Wars was early '80s so 36 years ago. Which is not bad really. Within my lifetime, I was a teenager when SW came out. As a scientist I remember the invention of PCR and transgenics during my PhD. Then in my first postdoc I did both. I remember the sequencing of the insulin gene as well. Now we have engineered human insulin so it is better than natural, it binds a bit tighter to the receptor so a lower dose is needed and it is more effective. True intelligent design. Most insulin dependent diabetics in the UK should be on it now.