A Conversation with David Whalen on Assistive Technology Needs and Opportunities for Mobility Challenged Individuals

David Whalen
Research Scientist
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Master Practitioner Seminar
JEC 3117
Wed, January 10, 2024 at 4:00 PM

David Whalen will share the needs and challenges of quadriplegics based on his experience.  He will present challenges/opportunities to develop tools for mobility-challenged individuals, and ideas and projects that he has explored.   He will highlight two projects that he has been working on for many years: 

  1. Sensor integration and testing for music and computer control for persons with disabilities that are quadriplegic/musical prototypes.
  2. Robotic systems for transferring quadriplegics into and out of bed as well as individuals with other neurodegenerative diseases, including elderly patients in nursing homes.

Remote Link:


David Whalen Performing on Jamboxx

David Whalen is a quadriplegic from a skiing accident in 1981. He received B.S. from Cornell in 1987, and J.D. from the University of Buffalo School of Law in 1990.  He was admitted into New York Bar in 1991.  He worked for the New York State from 1992 to his retirement in July 2023, as a legal researcher, judicial law clerk, and instructor for New York judiciary.

He is a co-founder of Jamboxx . The company, located in Troy, NY, evolved from a music company into a breath-monitoring device company, Zephyrx.  It has received NIH SBIR grants and has been featured as an SBIR success story.

Whalen has received multiple awards recognizing his performance and achievements as a New York State employee and his contributions to persons with disabilities. David was featured in the November issue of Parapalegia News, published by the Paralyzed Veterans of America and in the article Level Up for Health in the Rensselaer Alumni Magazine.