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Brain/Computer Gaming Interface Coming in 2008

samzenpus posted more than 7 years ago | from the look-mom-no-hands dept.

Games 129

An anonymous reader writes "Emotiv Systems today unveiled a brain/computer interface system with a helmet and software applications at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. The Project Epoc system can move objects based on a gamer's thoughts, reflect facial expressions, and respond to the excitement or calm the gamer mentally exerts, the company said....While Emotiv is not yet ready to announce any partnerships, [they] did say the product will be coming to market in 2008."

cancel ×


Well. (1, Insightful)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271174)

Ive seen studies on invasive technology on brain-digital connection, and it works the best, UNLESS it gets infected (often).

Infection in the brain is bad.

Well, how do they plan to hook up the player? Some helmet might work if the user shaves their head..

It'll probably work as well as the Phantom Console (Vaporware).

Re:Well. (4, Informative)

Broken scope (973885) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271222)

RTFA. This is not an invasive technology. Its a helmet.

Re:Well. (2)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271266)

Use your critical reading comprehension again, more closely this time.

I said that "invasive technology on brain-digital connection, and it works the best".

There's many scientists working on brain-digital interfaces so that handicapped people can do as the rest of us.

What data can you gather from a helmet most likely sitting on hair? Guess what.. you dont get much at all.

Re:Well. (4, Insightful)

venicebeach (702856) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271452)

What data can you gather from a helmet most likely sitting on hair? Guess what.. you dont get much at all.
Well, its EEG. EEG is a reflection of aggregate neural activity and can be recorded quite easily at the skull. Lab research on controling cursors and whatnot has been done before with EEG, but it is usually pretty crude control that one can gain even after extensive practice. As TFA says, "Anecdotally, the system seems to work best with children and others open to believing in their capability, according to Breen." In other words, the gullible tend to believe they are actually controlling things in the game.

Re:Well. (4, Insightful)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271896)

EEG is a reflection of aggregate neural activity and can be recorded quite easily at the skull...the system seems to work best with children and others open to believing in their capability

I guess you could say it works better with an "open mind."

Jokes aside, this seems like learning to control a body part. Children are constantly refining their internal models of motion as they grow and gain dexterity, so it makes sense that they would learn more quickly than an adult. People who suffer from nerve damage usually recover more quickly and more completely if they have self confidence. It's not mind-over-matter exactly, but those who believe they will fail likely will.

Still makes me wonder why bother (2, Interesting)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273042)

Call it lacking an open mind, if you will, but, by the sound of it, it sounds like a lot of work and a heck of a learning curve just to play a game. I thought the game designers were finally learning the idea that some of us just want to play a quick and unchallenging round of a game to relax, rather than have to spend a month just getting past the learning curve.

And the most successful interfaces and peripherals are those who don't require much practice either. Take the mouse for example. I actually made the experiment of taking my 80 year old grandma who's never touched a computer before, and trying to see how she does in a city building game. Within an hour she was using the mouse like a pro, with the sole hurdle of the left and right mouse buttons. I guess with an Apple mouse that would have been easier. Gamepads? Same thing. You can just get one and be comfortable with the thumbstick in no time. Heck, even taking non-gaming things, there's a reason why historically the crossbow was more popular than the much faster firing longbow: any peasant can point and click.

If you will, it's not entirely a matter of believing I'll fail, but a matter of what the heck would be my motivation to put some work in _that_. I can see how someone would be motivated to do that after a stroke, since you mention patients with nerve damage, because, simply put, they can't choose to "play" another RL. But in a game, between one where I have to spend months just learning to use the controls, and one where I can have fun within half an hour, I'll go for the latter every time.

Re:Well. (1)

Broken scope (973885) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271668)

You asked how they plan on hooking the player up. I gave you answer.

Invasive may work the best but this is for a game, only an idiot would undergo an invasive surgery to play a videogame.

I don't see this panning out for at least another 5 years. I agree with you, yes, hair would be a problem. Sorry if I came across as combative. My intent wasn't to be rude.

Re:Well. (4, Funny)

anagama (611277) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271724)

only an idiot would undergo an invasive surgery to play a videogame
This is /. You have people here who would have the surgery just to control a mouse. Imagine two hand free slideshow viewing -- not just timed, but you select the pictures and still have both hands free. That's gotta play well here. And then there's hands free Tux Racer. That will rock.

Where do I sign up??

Re:Well. (1, Funny)

Broken scope (973885) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271970)

Oh god... the implications of hands free web surfing.....

Re:Well. (1)

Toba82 (871257) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272128)

I think some neurons might um, fire... and cause you to lose control. Just a hint.

Re:Well. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271314)

What is really ironic is the controller shown for this post is the first system to have such as device.

The atari 2600 had it way back when...see link below. []

Optional Equipment for your brain. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271186)

Some game players will learn to enjoy the 'Force Feedback' electroshock feature!

Danger! (4, Funny)

svunt (916464) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271190)

...respond to the excitement or calm the gamer mentally exerts...

I can't wait for an 'adult' game to kill someone with a feedback loop of excitement and stimulation. That would be awesome.

Re:Danger! (2, Informative)

bendodge (998616) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271646)

That's sick. Besides, this only accepts input from the human.

Re:Danger! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272654)

I can't wait for an 'adult' game to kill someone with a feedback loop of excitement and stimulation. That would be awesome.
That's sick. Besides, this only accepts input from the human.
And what species were you planning to try multiplayer with?

Re:Danger! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272838)

I would imagine that information sent from one player to another will be purely visual/auditory in nature.

Been there (3, Interesting)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271198)

I remember a freind who had a Sega Genesis? controller that slipped on your index finger and supposedly moved by thought. What turned out was it was really good at knowing which way you are moving your finger.

Sorry, no links. The only thing I remember about it, it was around 1995-96 and I think I saw an add in gamepro for it.

Re:Been there (1)

PhrostyMcByte (589271) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271844)

I remember demoing something like that at Fry's. They told you to think of numbers/words to move a mouse on the screen. I never got it to do anything significant and was immediately told I was doing something wrong by the reps! Hopefully this will be better.

nw? (1)

mastershake_phd (1050150) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271210)

Ive saw this on TV 12 years ago. Back then it was VERY slow moving something with your thoughts. Even if it is faster with out physical feedback how accurate can it be? I doubt your going to be racking up the headshots with this.

Re:nw? (1)

PockyBum522 (1025001) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271794)

12 Years ago it sucked. That means it sucks the same now. In the future no improvements will be had.

Re:nw? (1)

whitehatnetizen (997645) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272178)

here's a link to a PDF _N&V_nature2000.pdf []

discussing how a monkey was able to feed itself using a brain-controlled robot hand. it goes into a bit of technical detail also - quite interesting (or informative, depending how this post get's modded).

picture in this article here: trolled-robotic-arm/ []

Sounds great.. (1, Funny)

Bargearse (68504) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271212)

I'll make sure to get one when they're released so I can play Duke Nukem Forever :)

2005 (0)

biocute (936687) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271224)

If brain implant of microchips [] can do it in 2005, I'm sure it's trival with a helmet in 2007.

Re:2005 (1)

venicebeach (702856) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271504)

It's not trivial. The EEG signal at the scalp does not necessarily contain the same information accesible with an implanted microchip. The problem is that by the time you record at the scalp you are looking at activity aggregated across large populations of neurons. Not to mention that signal is filtered and spatially smoothed through the skull. If we could get information about what individual neurons are doing without opening someone's head neuroscience would take a huge leap forward. That technology is more than a couple years off.

Re:2005 (1)

robinvanleeuwen (1009809) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273774)

Sure you are forgetting that in 2005 i had to have surgery to play games
with mind controls,now i put on a helmet, quite a different approach
won't you say?

Now (5, Funny)

Rdickinson (160810) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271232)

Now when you say you cant get a game out of your mind, you'll be right!

Performance Enhancer? (1)

RagingMaxx (793220) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271236)

Finally, I can smoke crack and play GTA at the same time.

Obligatory... (0, Troll)

Landshark17 (807664) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271240)

But will it play Duke Nukem Forever?

Re:Obligatory... (1)

Disharmony2012 (998431) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271516)


Re:Obligatory... (1)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272038)

Does it run on linux?

Finally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271250)

a computer-brain interface, now I can finally replace that outdated operating system running on my brain with Linux. ;)

marketing plan (5, Funny)

caitsith01 (606117) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271252)

Emotiv Systems plans to target the Chinese pigeon [] market first, as many of the birds have already had the necessary equipment jammed through their craniums.

Release titles include "GTA: Bread Crust", "Microsoft Flight Simulator 2007: Parked Lexus Alley", and of course the much anticipated "The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Hideous Chinese Biolab Bay".

...and it's going to suck! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271262)

You just know it!

Oh man (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271274)

Let's do this reverse. The computer working the brain. We'll all turn into MS Bob. But at least with this I can learn perl in my sleep.

Do I need to get an adapter for my USB bio-port? (1)

Sad Adam (1036862) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271348)

Sure beats an ergonomic mouse. But does this mean that I have to get an adapter for my USB bioport?

Bio-ports were made fashionable by the Cronenberg film Existenz btw.

"In the near-future, "eXistenZ" is the newest and greatest gaming experience from designer Allegra Geller (Jennifer Jason Leigh). She meets Ted Pikul (Jude Law), a novice security guard, at a public preview of the new game. eXistenZ is part of an organic gaming system, the main console of which - the MetaFlesh Game-Pod (!) - is a living organism genetically engineered from fertilized amphibian eggs stuffed with synthetic DNA. Players plug directly into the system via their 'bioport' - a fashionable addition to the base of one's spine to enable full sensory interaction with the MetaFlesh system - and the human body is used as the power source for the game pod. When fanatics burst into the preview test and attempt to kill Geller, Pikul is forced into action and escapes with the game designer - setting up a cat-and-mouse chase between the world-famous Geller and her would-be assassins. Whilst on the run, Geller convinces Pikul to have the operation to implant a bioport so that he too can experience the cutting edge of gaming technology. The two of them enter into the game world of eXistenZ where murder and intrigue abound and the boundaries of reality and fantasy are almost impossible to perceive. As they spend more and more time in the system, becoming embroiled in a complex and dangerous game plot, their bodies in the real world are exposed to the forces of the anti-eXistenZalists." []

Re:Do I need to get an adapter for my USB bio-port (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272336)

Sure beats an ergonomic mouse. But does this mean that I have to get an adapter for my USB bioport?

I crammed a USB cable up my ass one time, seemed to fit pretty well, I think it would be feasible to use that to feed data to it, but don't eat any beans before you play.

Project Epoc (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271366)

brings mind control to games

Sounds scary, doesn't it?

Sweet (1)

Orange Crush (934731) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271376)

I love the skullcap glove. It's so bad!

the big question that needs to be answered.... (4, Funny)

smash (1351) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271380)

... will this work through my tinfoil hat?

Re:the big question that needs to be answered.... (2, Funny)

quakehead3 (988738) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272376)

of course not!

Re:the big question that needs to be answered.... (1)

VanessaE (970834) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272658)

Probably not but give other slashdotters some time and they'll come up with a new hat to wear *over* the helmet. Of course, then you have to worry about someone picking up signals being broadcast off the interface cable.....

Legit devices shouldn't require magical thinking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271412)

Anecdotally, the system seems to work best with children and others open to believing in their capability, according to Breen.

Sounds like the force. Or Scientology.

"The detection works best when you think about that action in a particular way, repeating that thought pattern," Breen said.

"We have had a number of kids try the equipment, and they often get the best results right away," Breen said. "Part of that is because the kid doesn't have the same kind of barriers as an adult does. Lots of kids can fantasize about moving a cup and believe it."

Adults, on the other hand, are more definitive in their thinking and thus have a barrier to believing that they can do something out of the ordinary, Breen said.

Why wouldn't the more 'definitive' thinking of the adults with the patterns more ingrained be easiest for their detection system to pick up? Or does this magical system only exhibit itself the best in those who exhibit magical thinking.

Re:Legit devices shouldn't require magical thinkin (2, Insightful)

I don't want to spen (638810) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272066)

Maybe the kids have thinner skulls so the signals can get through more easily.

Re:Legit devices shouldn't require magical thinkin (2, Insightful)

FrostyCoolSlug (766239) | more than 7 years ago | (#18274110)

I guess at the end of the day, most adults have a firm grasp of the laws of physics, It's easier to say to a child "You can move a cup with your mind!" and have the child believe and try doing it, than saying it to an adult and not having them laughing at you because they know it's physically not possible.

Sorry (1)

Marko DeBeeste (761376) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271422)

All my money is tied up in 3d goggles, flying cars and cryogenics.

But thanks for playing and please accept this lovely home version of our game as a parting gift.

More info and a picture (4, Informative)

JuzzFunky (796384) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271470)

Here is their homepage: []

Looks like they're looking for people to test their brain control devices on... []

Re:More info and a picture (1)

Corpuscavernosa (996139) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272534)

All participants will receive $20 to compensate their time as well as images of themselves in the headcap setup...

Ok that's just awesome.

Re:More info and a picture (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18273044)

I've actually used it - I know a few people working on developing it in Sydney. The tests they run on you are actually just done using a normal skull-cap, presumably so they get the best readings from you. I used an earlier version of their cap to try doing the psychokinetic thing, but unless the hardware was working perfectly it was actually really really hard to do. I didn't get the $20 or anything, but I did get to crash not only their Christmas party, but their New Years party too!

Interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271484)

Check out SmartBrainGames []

Biofeedback (2, Interesting)

elmedico27 (931070) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271486)

I didn't RTFA (this is /. after all) but it sounds a lot like the already existing technology of biofeedback. There's been a "game" out for a while called Journey to Wild Divine [] that responds to the player's biological processes (heart rate, etc.) Supposedly, after extended usage, the player can actually learn to control those processes with the mind and therefore control the game.

ForceFeedback (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272460)

Think of the next level: ForceFeedback

Re:Biofeedback (1)

donaldm (919619) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273402)

Biofeedback has been around for a very long time (I remember reading a popular electronics article about mid 1960's) however instead of training your mind to attain a certain "alpha" rhythm relaxed state you need to have to train your brain "waves" to change very quickly if you want to control a game and that is not easy. There is also quite a big difference between connecting finger clips to connecting a head set which may get quite uncomfortable over extended time. Either way you still need to train your mind to do something and this is not remotely like manipulating a keyboard or game-pad, which can be done by just about anyone with hands or manipulating appendages.

I would not be surprised given the state of the US patent department if there is a patent on this even though this methodology is well known and has been around along time. Basically all you have here is a more comfortable?? skull cap and more sensitive selective amplifier. Of course don't forget the software.

Wait a minute (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271506)

Gamers have brains now?

I think we're getting a bit ahead of ourselves here.

You will be assimilated (1)

Starfleet Command (936772) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271514)

I for one welcome our Borg Overlords. Resistance is futile.

3..2..1... (3, Funny)

The Living Fractal (162153) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271530)

vague pr0n use ideas begin now!


Re:3..2..1... (1)

joshier (957448) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271766)

!!! TLF !!!

I already have a brain-computer interface (2, Insightful)

fredrated (639554) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271550)

They are called my hands, and they work very well, thank you.

Re:I already have a brain-computer interface (0, Redundant)

The Living Fractal (162153) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271596)

No.. those would be a brain-crotch interface...

Sorry I couldn't resist.


Sounds good to me (5, Interesting)

Zorque (894011) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271556)

I've been using a system called bio-feedback that interfaces with the brain through a series of very small electrodes, sometimes as few as 3 (one on the back of each earlobe, and one on either of the hemispheres). It works by displaying your brainwaves in a way which the brain finds easy to understand, and forcing you to enter a certain frame of mind to control the program. This means the treatment is often done in the form of games. The games the treatment uses are usually very simple (for example, one called Space Race forces the user to relax and to concentrate in order to cause one spaceship to speed up and two others to slow down), but with enough electrodes in the right places, and with an (indeterminate to someone outside of the industry by myself, and probably varying from person to person) amount of training, I can see this coming to fruition in the near future. I really don't know whether 2008 is a realistic date, but it is coming, and sooner than a lot of you think. On a related note, the laptop in my therapist's office required that the electrodes enter a box, which output to a parallel connection, which they had to send to a parallel/serial adapter, then to a serial/USB adapter. Needless to say, it took me a while to trace the amalgam of cords sitting on that desk.

Re:Sounds good to me (1)

Zorque (894011) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271590)

(Sorry for the huge block of text, I forgot /. uses HTML and didn't add a line break tag in there.)

Re:Sounds good to me (1)

purify0583 (1063046) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272132)

What you are describing is a long step away from the type of control you need to control a game. The sensors are just measuring the intensity of your brain activity, nothing more. Basically you have a single input channel with variable intensity, sort of like the gas pedal on your car. But in order to drive your car you need a wheel and a brake as well. Or if you are playing madden 07, you need input channels for left/right, foreward/back, throw, catch, etc, and all nearly at the same time. It is a very significant step to actually monitor the data encoded in your brain waves and make sense of it, as opposed to just looking and seeing "oh there is a lot of activity now, and now there isnt that much". Its not going to be happening any time soon.

Re:Sounds good to me (1)

Zorque (894011) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273110)

The system I've been using (I'm not familiar with the name or who makes it, since I've been going to a therapist to undergo the procedures) actually does have a highly variable amount of channels of control; the example I gave was just the first "game" I had been subject to. Even that one, however -while its only purpose was to measure the amount of activity going on in a single hemisphere of my brain- had 3 separate levels of control, and through concentration and practice I was able to manipulate each of those. The others have been more complex in design and implementation, requiring more electrodes (seeing mockup pictures of the product in question on Engadget, I know it has around 25-30 contact points on it) more training, though nothing anybody committed to learning the system couldn't handle.

About time! (2, Funny)

finlandia1869 (1001985) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271588)

I remember DOS games like Red Storm Rising that came with a keyboard overlay because you needed that many different commands. Heck, imagine how much easier it would've been to play games like System Shock if you could've issued commands by thought.

Of course, this could be a problem in The Sims. I can see my wife accidentally screwing up in the game because she briefly thought about cooking dinner or playing with the dog. Of course, if her sims kept accidentally getting it on, then I would have a good signal she was in the mood!

Borat-style (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18271600)

In Kazakhstan, games control YOU!

Quick--Contact Wesley Crusher! (1)

penguin_dance (536599) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271632)

Those damn aliens are trying to take over humankind again using The Game [] !

This will not work. (3, Insightful)

wframe9109 (899486) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271686)

What is one of the most important factors in judging the quality of an input device?

The correlation between the users intent, and what actually happens.

If a device cannot do what the user intends at an optimal level, then it is a poor input device, and will be doomed to fail.

At this point in time, we don't have the technology to get a correlation between intent and what happens high enough to use consistently as an input device. When we do, it still will be a long way from the sort of complex controls required in the majority of modern games.


Not Only For Games (5, Insightful)

Siker (851331) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271754)

With sufficiently precise brain wave monitoring it should be possible to detect very complex patterns. At the same time the user would 'learn' how to create certain patterns, just like how any person learns how to move their arms or blink. Eventually you could make your avatar run and jump without feeling a twitch in your legs - your brain knows what patterns are needed to make your avatar take actions.

I can imagine this being useful for other things than games in the long run. This, of course, would be the more obvious Neuromancer style future where your control over the computer is almost entirely brain based. Once again, with sufficient resolution in a device like this one you could probably type at the speed you can think. You would be able to give 'voice commands' faster than you can talk. Need to view another object on your screen? Just think about it.

The ramifications would be enormous. What if people could write a book in half the time simply because they were no longer constantly distracted by their own typing? Even further into the future when there is some kind of feedback device, maybe you would be able to 'feel' your way around data, rapidly moving through it at the speed of your thoughts. Perhaps you would ultimately be able to search faster and better than Google.

Re:Not Only For Games (1)

Torvaun (1040898) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272412)

Funny, I don't really feel like learning how to walk again just so I can do it in a video game. The other Neuromancer stuff you mention is pretty awesome, though, and would probably be a better way of exploiting this technology.

And as long as we're talking about feedback:
"I know kung fu."

Medical Applications Barely Mentioned (4, Insightful)

CorporalKlinger (871715) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271760)

The "wow" factor for the use of this technology by healthy people to play video games can't be denied (if, in fact, the device works as it says it does). My huge question about this, though, is why if the technology is so good, it hasn't been implemented to help people with neurological abnormalities better control the world around them. I'm sure many a quadriplegic would be ecstatic about the opportunity to control their wheelchair or utilize a mechanical arm to help feed themselves using a helmet and the "power of thought." Instead, it seems like the first application being touted is for video game control? That doesn't make much sense to me - I would think the medical market would be where the money is at AND the population most likely to adopt such a new technology without it having to be 100% accurate all the time.

It makes me wonder if this is just a lot of hot air to get a company's name thrown around in places like Slashdot. Yay! Control video games with your brain! Then why is it researchers at the National Institutes of Health as recently as two years ago still couldn't get a similar technology to work with a level of accuracy greater than that of random chance just to tell whether a person was going to move their right or left arm before the motion actually took place? Oh, and those analyses were done with EEG, which involves the use of a skullcap with 30+ electrical leads stuck directly to a person's scalp with a special electro-conductive gel. I'm sure if that's required to make this "helmet" work, it probably won't go over too well since setting up a clinical EEG skullcap takes upwards of 10 minutes and can be rather painful, depending on how much hair a person has.

Re:Medical Applications Barely Mentioned (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272552)

Haven't you watched angelic layer?

There's more money in video games than health applications.

Re:Medical Applications Barely Mentioned (1)

nephillim (980798) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272748)

I would think the reason gamers might test this technology first is because if stray thoughts (or misread ones) cause mario to jump off a cliff and you lose a life, well you are still playing a game by thought and that's cool...

Now if a person in a wheelchair has a stray thought or a misread one and goes off a cliff...

I think letting the technology mature while being used in other sectors can't hurt

Re:Medical Applications Barely Mentioned (1)

Zorque (894011) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273136)

I actually have seen studies in medical areas with similar technology. For one, direct-brain systems are implemented in things like cochlear implants, and soon may be used in "bionic eyes." Another related system I saw used a head-mounted camera to send signals directly to the tongue, allowing the vision-impaired to "see" objects in front of them, and even allowing a blind test group to navigate through a small obstacle course.

Further, I've heard of several cases in which stroke victims or people who have had spinal injuries were able to manipulate a cursor onscreen to point to different words, allowing them to speak, as it were.

Last but not least, several different groups are working, many of them very close to being finished, on lines of mechanized limbs which interface with the nerves rather than detect adjacent muscle movements.

It does seem strange that it's entering the entertainment field first, but the technology is being used widely in medical research, and has already done a lot of good. It's just that it's a lot more complicated to interface with real-world objects than with ones whose rules and laws are so easily redefined to fit one's needs, i.e. virtual objects.

3 Finger Salute (0, Flamebait)

AmigaHeretic (991368) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271806)

So if my brain blue screens while I'm wearing this thing I guess that will give a whole new meaning to the "3 Finger Salute".
/me puckers anus.

Saw this 15+ years ago (3, Interesting)

Brad1138 (590148) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271850)

On a TV show from the early 90's called "Beyond 2000" there was an episode that showed a lady hooked up to electrodes, controlling a computer character in a 3D environment by thought. I have often wondered where that technology had gone. With as fast as computer technology moves I thought it would have been here well before 15 years. I have Googled for info on that epidsode but can't find any.

Re:Saw this 15+ years ago (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272252)

Have you ever watched Beyond 2000 as an adult? Every three minutes you can't help yourself from answering back when they make some optimistic prediction about the future by saying "yeah, and what COULD happen is that the technology never gets out of the prototype stage because its being developed my technical people who feel their work is too important to hire a marketing person, which is why I'm hearing about this on Beyond 2000 instead of seeing them on store shelves."

Almost everything on that show, ever, is completely impractical and never makes it out of the prototype stage. They were right to kill it.. and this Beyond Tomorrow crap that they brought out a few years ago is even worse.. they can't even find good prototypes to be optimistic about.

Re:Saw this 15+ years ago (1)

complete loony (663508) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272520)

I'm standing in a white coat shouting at you, and I'll tell you why later on.

They took 45 minutes to give you maybe 15 minutes of actual material. Most of it was concept cars that you might otherwise have seen at a car show. Full of impossible or unmarketable vapourware, eventually the show degraded into a blatant marketing exercise.

lol (0)

DuroSoft (1009945) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271924)

did you hear that? that was the sound of thousands of geeks silently orgasming..

No way. Duke Nukem Forever 2008... (1)

ambivalentduck (1004092) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271928)

No way this is even mildly accurate. It was all-but a breakthrough to do this with exposed brains and ECOG. The Moran lab at Washington University gets 2-3 degrees of freedom from that.

No way they're getting more than 2 even after *long* training periods from EEG without using exotic (and accordingly expensive) components.

The next CS champion! (0)

Ruvim (889012) | more than 7 years ago | (#18271978)

The next CounterStrike champion will be an epileptic patient?

The cybersex... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272046)

...will never be the same!

Metaverse has arrived (2, Interesting)

lib3rtarian (1050840) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272134)

Combine this with the Sony's announcement today that PS3 will have a persistent online "street" where everyone will have an avatar and their own apartment, and it's basically the metaverse. Sweet.

Just in time for (1)

ScottCooperDotNet (929575) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272208)

StarCraft 2. Oh to be one with Kerrigan's Swarm again...

Real Deal (1)

Arakageeta (671142) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272210)

These guys are the real deal. I witnessed a prototype demo back in early 2006. In addition to developing an input device, they've also been using the thing to test video games under development: test where players are bored, surprised, learning, etc. Its really exciting stuff!

Please Tag: PS9 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18272298)

Doesn't anybody remember the PS2 commercial featuring the "PS9"? []

Please tag the article PS9.

In Soviet Russia, (0, Redundant)

quakehead3 (988738) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272324)

the Brain/Computer interface controls YOU!

Proof of Suckage (4, Insightful)

popo (107611) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272492)

Excuse the troll-like subject title above, but if a neuro interface that could actually reflect precise movements and commands had been invented, the company would be running straight to the vastly more lucrative military market long before taking a look at home consoles.

The fact that its coming straight to home consoles suggests that hype and hope will be the products primary market drivers.

My two cents.

Re:Proof of Suckage (1)

someone1234 (830754) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273928)

Maybe they just want cheap test subjects? What if the stuff isn't refined yet for military use but lacks funding?

Been there, done that.... (5, Informative)

uf_RocketSurgeon (1073120) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272714)

I made a "brainwave joystick" as part of my graduate research in neuro-engineering. g-video-game-with-brain.html [] This is not new technology... it's been around for about twenty years now, but about every year or so CNN reports on it like it was just invented yesterday. It does have a high "gee-whiz" factor, but the reality is that the error rate is very high. There are thousands of neuroscientists working on brain computer interfacing at any given moment. What makes you think the first breakthrough is going to be for gaming? A more noble cause is to allow the paralyzed to control wheelchairs with mere thought and that hasn't happened yet (even an error rate of 5% is too high). Systems that are a little more accurate involve implanting electrodes in the brain. Unfortunately, scar tissue slowly surrounds the electrodes and the signals become weaker and weaker. Eventually after about 1 or 2 years the electrodes have to be surgically removed and placed in another location (and the patient has to be re-trained). So despite what the latest "future show" on the Discovery Channel may say, we are still a loooong way off from driving our cars with brain waves.

The fine print... (0)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 7 years ago | (#18272974)

From the TFA: The system software analyzes the signals emitted by the brain...

Exclusions: Does not work on blondes.

[Could... not... resist... I'm a bad, bad person. :-) ]

mod 0p (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18273000)

to its lai3-back GAY NIIGERS from OpenBSD. How many

Back to the Future Part II (0)

Champion3 (599877) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273040)

"You mean you have to use your hands? That's like a baby's toy!"

Mind Control? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18273308)

I don't care about movement, but if I can switch weapons instead of fumbling for keys, I'll be happy.

In other news.. (1)

LingNoi (1066278) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273324)

... Google orders 100,000 units in order to monitor employees thoughts.

The company responded with a statement announcing that the reason was to make sure they were not doing or thinking evil.

But do you have to... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18273336)


Sorry, Firefox [] sure did leave some horrible scars...

I am (1)

GregPK (991973) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273686)

So buying one when they come out. I really don't care what the cost. I've been wanting one of these for years to play my games.

Oblig reference (0)

Punch-Drunk Slob (973904) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273688)

To master this game, you would need to have an ample amount of Midochlorians in you.

Breen? (1)

utnapistim (931738) | more than 7 years ago | (#18273934)

FTFA: "[...] according to Breen."

What? No one is concerned that we have a Mr. Breen in charge of research? Are they sponsored by a company called Black Mesa by any chance?

Its only the beginning ...

Good, but i think about MANY different things (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 7 years ago | (#18274238)

while i am gaming. What if the interface picks up a strong one of those thoughts and messes up my game ?
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