Ekso Bionics is a company to watch. Building exoskeletons for everyday use by paraplegics is their goal by 2014. Erika Strickland’s “Good-bye, Wheelchair, Hello Exoskeleton” highlights the progress of some of Ekso’s first patients and the potential in the near future:

[Eythor] Bender, Ekso Bionics’ CEO, is confident that controlling Eksos will come to feel utterly natural for the people who rely on them for mobility. “People talk about robots taking over, especially in factories, and taking away our jobs. But the way we see it is, if you can’t beat them, join them!” says Bender. “We are joining with the robots. And this has the ability to make us stronger, more productive, and to improve our quality of life.”

As the technology gets lighter, more powerful, and less expensive to manufacture, it’s hard not to imagine exoskeletons proliferating.