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The technical meaning of "sentient" is "capable of feeling". It's opposed to "sapient", which means capable of thinking.

It's a reasonable adaptation of the term to have it mean "capable of transmitting touch signals to the wearers nervous system" in the context of prosthetics.






That's an unfortunate accident of technical jargon...

Oh good, I was worried that Andy Weir was a coauthor for a sec:

http://www.galactanet.com/comic/view.php?strip=665


Wouldn't "sensate" be a better word?

Yes.



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