Science will be the Catalyst for Riley’s future
VISION is not the only function teen tech whiz, Riley Saban, hopes to use his eyes in the near future.
After teaming up with ABC's Catalyst scientist, Jordan Nguyen for the upcoming Becoming Superhuman documentary, the 13-year-old Mullaway local is on track to using his eyes to control technology in his environment from driving a car to simply turning on a light.
Living with severe cerebral palsy, the 13-year-old Mullaway local has no voluntary control over his body except his eyes.
Over the course of a month, Jordan collaborated with Riley for the documentary with the aim of empowering the teen with telekinetic control - the ability to command technology in the world around him with his eye movements.
In what was described by Riley as an epic experience, the pair and Catalyst's team of scientists trailed a series of different prototypes to enable Riley to perform day-to-day functions with his eyes.
Jordan and Riley forged an electric friendship throughout the series and are continuing their work together in developing technologies to help people like Riley gain independence.
"I am learning to code computers at school. I am also testing prototypes for Jordan and his team. Jordan is a great friend and an awesome mentor and I love being a part of his team," Riley said.
Jordan foresees a bright future for Riley and hopes he can one day use his talents to foster faster technology development and uptake in regional areas like the Coffs Coast.
"I think that it's important that there are champions in different areas who understand it and can see how it can positively impact an area and in this case, I truly believe that's Riley," Jordan said.
"He's a great friend and he's got a great heart so that's what inspires me about Riley, and I'm sure that's what inspires everyone around him."
With a strong ambition beyond his years, the Mullaway youngster has big dreams in the tech and sports space.
"When I finish school my dream is to work with Jordan to help change peoples' lives with disabilities all over the world. I would also like to represent my country in Boccia," Riley said.
The two-part Being Superhuman series will air on the ABC's Catalyst program on Tuesday May 24 and 31 at 8pm.