posted on Dec, 6 2004 @ 08:26 PM
Researchers in NY have devised a system that interprets brain activity into actions on a computer. This system allows paralyzed individuals the
capability to regain control over their lives by allowing them to literally use their thoughts to control a computer. The process takes some practice
as the system must "learn" what the person's brain waves are intending but the researchers claim that novice users can be up and running very
"If you can move a cursor in several dimensions and you can select items, then you can have the panoply, the whole universe of computer programs
available to you," says Dr. Jonathan Wolpaw, who heads the project at the New York State Department of Health's Wadsworth Center in Albany.
"Studies show that if paralyzed people can communicate, they can have lives that are worthwhile and meaningful and enjoyable, both for them and their
family members," says Dr. Wolpaw.
Brain waves are the very weak electrical signals given off by the firing of millions of nerve cells in the brain. They can be measured by wires in a
cap placed on the outside of the head.
The program that translates a person's waves into computer movement takes some practice.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
This reminds me of the early stages of voice recognition software where you had to train the software to your dialect and pronunciations. This has
major implications for the millions of individuals who suffer from either partial or full paralysis and have found themselves confined to a bed or
Though it may be a ways off this system could even allow paralyzed people to operate motor vehicles. This technology combined with the work in
magnetic car control systems could open doors previously kept shut to paralyzed individuals.
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[edit on 6-12-2004 by Banshee]