Mind + Machine

Standard

The ability of human to control computer is becoming a reality. Brain Computer Interface (BCI) are devices that capture the signal generated by the brain when an intention is made. This technology will potentially restore communication and movement to those who are disabled (Schwartz, Cui, Weber, & Moran, 2006). Currently, BCI devices works by recording electrical activities from the scalp, surface of the brain and/or within the cerebral cortex that is then send to the computer.

The application of this technology has expanded wildly in the recent years. Devices that we often see in the books or movies are now available, though not perfect. The various devices and applications that stem from the technology are:

Emotiv EPOC

Figure 1. Emotive EPOC. (n.d.) coroflot.com

Emotiv EPOC allows the users to interact with computers by using thoughts. This devices uses 14 sensors plus 2 references to tune into electric signals produced by the brain to detect the user’s thought feelings and expressions in real time. The EPOC is capable of detecting the user’s facial expression, emotional state and thoughts and intent. (EPOC, n.d.)

Muse

[vimeo 52390320]

Similar like Emotiv EPOC, Muse is a 4 sensor headband that allows the user to control applications, games, reduce stress, and improve memory and concentration. Muse measures the user’s brainwaves in real time thus it is capable to guide the user to relax or focus before performing any mentally challenging task. Though still under development, Muse intent to allow the user to fully control the smartphone with only thoughts. (MUSE, n.d.)

BrainDriver

From its name, BrainDriver is a project that allows the user to control the car by thoughts alone. The project uses the Emotiv EGG headset. The user is only required to do some mental training and they are able to drive the car with the brain. (Appiron, 2011)

Neuro Turntable Mobile

Figure 2. Neuro Turntable Mobile and an iPhone running the application. (n.d.) neurowear.com

Neuro Turntable plays music from the user’s mobile phone only when the user’s thought is set to listen to a music, music stops when the user is distracted (like talking to someone, or thinks about something else). (Neuro Turntable, n.d.)

Brain-to-Brain Remote Control

Figure 3. Researchers experimenting with the system. (2013) extremetech.com

Researchers at the University of Washington created a system that allows one researcher to remotely control the hand of another researcher by merely thinking about moving his hand. This was done across the internet. (Anthony, 2013)

Orbit Helicopter

Figure 4. Puzzlebox Orbit Helicopter. (2012) brainstorm.puzzlebox.info

This is a helicopter toy uses the standard BCI input devices, NeuroSky Mindwave EGG to control it. Since it will take some time to master the control of the helicopter, it has been equipped it a unique spherical protector that protects the helicopters from unintended impact.  (Puzzlebox, n.d.)

Necomimi and Shippo

Figure 5 and 6. Necomimi and Shippo. (n.d.) neurowear.com

This is a pair of fluffy ears and tail that scans the user’s brain, the parts will stand up when the user’s concentrate and relax when user’s relax, recreating the sensation of an animal with a tail. (neurowear, n.d.) (neurowear, shippo, n.d.)

Neurocam

This Japanese project created a device that is hooked up to a mobile phone that will captures everything that the user is interested in. (Neurogadget, 2013)

Prosthetic Limbs

There are countless of people who have lost their limbs, mainly because of military service or cancer. Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)‘s advance prosthetics research has become their hope to return their lost limbs, and over the years the research has resulted in some impressive breakthrough. They have created prosthetics arms that lets the wearer to control them using their mind. The control extends not only from the elbow to the wrist but also to the fingers. The video above shows an army veteran using a working prosthetic arm to lift an object and other various tasks.The device can even communicate back to the wearer, restoring a sense of touch. The device has been proven to be very effective when Zac Vawter uses his bionic leg to successfully climb a 103-Floor building in Chicago. The videos below shows how the technology changes the life of Zac Vawter. (Blagon, 2013)

BCI will not only be effective for people with disabilities, there are many possibilities on how these technology will change the way people uses interact machines.

References

Anthony, S. (2013) ‘First human brain-to-brain interface allows remote control over the internet, telepathy coming soon’, Extreme Tech. [online] 13 August 2013. Available at: http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/165081-first-human-brain-to-brain-interface-allows-remote-control-over-the-internet-telepathy-coming-soon [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Appiron (2011) BrainDriver – a mind controlled car 16 February 2011. Available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iDV_62QoHjY [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Blagon, J. (2013) ‘Darpa’s New mind-controlled prosthetics let patients feel again’, The Verge. [online] 31 May 2013.Available at: http://www.theverge.com/2013/5/31/4382366/darpa-tmr-mind-controlled-prosthetics-sensory-feedback [Accessed 13 November 2013].

EPOC, E. (n.d.) Emotiv [online]. Available at: http://www.emotiv.com/epoc/features.php %5BAccessed 13 November 2013].

DARPA Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. (2013) ‘Targeted Muscle Re-innveration (TMR) for Advanced Prosthetic Control’. 30 May 2013. Available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-u8KkvZvVVI [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Falcon, A. (n.d.) ’8 Mind-Blowing Gadgets You Can Control Just With Your Brain’, Hongkiat.com. [online] Available at: http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/brain-controlled-gadgets/ [Accessed 13 November 2013].

InteraXon. (2012) ‘Introducing Muse: Changing The Way The World Thinks’. 2012. Available at: http://vimeo.com/52390320 [ Accessed 13 November 2013].

MUSE. (n.d.) ‘MUSE: The Brain-Sensing Headband that lets you control things with your mind’,  indiegogo. [online] Available at: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/muse-the-brain-sensing-headband-that-lets-you-control-things-with-your-mind [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Neuro Turntable. (n.d.) ‘Neuro Turntable,  Neurowear. [online] Available at: http://neurowear.com/projects_detail/neuro_turntable.html [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Neurogadget. (2013) ‘Neurocam turns your iPhone into a wearable camera that only records what interests you’, Neurogadget. [online] 29 October 2013. Available at: http://neurogadget.com/2013/10/29/neurocam-turns-your-iphone-into-a-wearable-camera-that-only-records-what-interests-you-video/8861 [Accessed 13 November 2013].

neurowear. (2013) ‘Neurowear “neurocam” concept movie’. 29 October 2013. Available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=CDgkX-JY_wM [Accessed 13 November 2013].

neurowear. (n.d.) necomimi’ neurowear. [online] Available at: http://neurowear.com/projects_detail/necomimi.html [Accessed 13 November 2013].

neurowear. (n.d.) ‘shippo’, neurowear. [online] Available at: http://neurowear.com/projects_detail/shippo.html [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Puzzlebox. (n.d.) ‘Puzzlebox Orbit: Brain-Controlled Helicopter’, Kickstarter. [online] Available at: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/puzzlebox/puzzlebox-orbit-brain-controlled-helicopter [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Robknows100. (2013) ‘First mind-controlled bionic leg a ‘groundbreaking’ advance’. 25 September 2013. Available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=efN8QPbVHdU [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Slatester. (2012) ‘Amputee Scales 103-Story Building with Bionic Leg’. 5 November 2012. Available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xjYoUdSAK6k [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Schwartz, A. B., Cui, T., Weber, D. J., & Moran, D. W. (2006, October 5) ‘Brain-Controlled Interfaces: Movement Restoration with Neural Prosthetics’, Neuron Volume 52, issue 1. [online] 5 October 2006. Science Direct. Available at: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0896627306007264 [Accessed 13 November 2013].

List of Images

Figure 1. Photograph ofEmotiv Epoc’, (n.d.) [image online] ‘Emotiv Epoc’. Coroflot. Available at: http://www.coroflot.com/chris_thomson/Emotiv-Epoc [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Figure 2. Photograph ofNeuro Turntable Mobile and an iPhone running the application’, (n.d.) [image online] ‘Neuro Turntable’. Neurowear. Available at: http://neurowear.com/projects_detail/neuro_turntable.html [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Figure 3. Photograph of ‘Researchers experimenting with the system’, (2013) [image online] ‘First human brain-to-brain interface allows remote control over the internet, telepathy coming soon’. Extreme Tech. 13 August 2013, Available at: http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/165081-first-human-brain-to-brain-interface-allows-remote-control-over-the-internet-telepathy-coming-soon [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Figure 4. Photograph of ‘Puzzlebox Orbit Helicopter’, (2012) [image online] ‘Puzzlebox Orbit: Brain-Controlled Helicopter‘. Puzzlebox. 8 November 2012, Available at: http://brainstorms.puzzlebox.info/ [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Figure 5. Photograph of ‘Necomimi’, (n.d.) [image online] ‘Necomimi’. Neurowear. Available at: http://neurowear.com/projects_detail/necomimi.html [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Figure 6. Photograph of ‘Shippo’, (n.d.) [image online] ‘Shippo’. Neurowear. Available at: http://neurowear.com/projects_detail/shippo.html [Accessed 13 November 2013].

Figure 7. Photograph of ‘Army Veteran with DARPA Prosthetic Arm’

Advertisements