INFO SCIENCE: It always nice to read a story about the amazing abilities of the human brain. We spend so much time in them, it's easy to forget they are the most versatile and resilient information systems of all time.
Ms. Schiltz and other patients like her are the beneficiaries of an astonishing new technology that allows one set of sensory information to substitute for another in the brain.
Using novel electronic aids, vision can be represented on the skin, tongue or through the ears. If the sense of touch is gone from one part of the body, it can be routed to an area where touch sensations are intact. Pilots confused by foggy conditions, in which the horizon disappears, can right their aircraft by monitoring sensations on the tongue or trunk. Surgeons can feel on their tongues the tip of a probe inside a patient's body, enabling precise movements.
For any readers that want to read more, I recommend all of Oliver Sacks' books.