Researching Direct Brain Interfaces for Text Entry

Posted on October 27, 2009  Comments (1)

Adam Wilson posted a status update on the social networking Web site Twitter ”” just by thinking about it. A UW-Madison biomedical engineering doctoral student, Wilson is among a growing group of researchers worldwide who aim to perfect a communication system for users whose bodies do not work, but whose brains function normally. Among those are people who have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), brain-stem stroke or high spinal cord injury.

The interface consists, essentially, of a keyboard displayed on a computer screen. “The way this works is that all the letters come up, and each one of them flashes individually,” says Williams. “And what your brain does is, if you’re looking at the ‘R’ on the screen and all the other letters are flashing, nothing happens. But when the ‘R’ flashes, your brain says, ‘Hey, wait a minute. Something’s different about what I was just paying attention to.’ And you see a momentary change in brain activity.”

The system still is not very quick. However, as with texting, users improve as they practice using the interface. “I’ve seen people do up to eight characters per minute,” says Wilson.

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One Response to “Researching Direct Brain Interfaces for Text Entry”

  1. Celluon Magic Cube Laser Projection Keyboard and Touchpad | Curious Cat Gadgets
    January 31st, 2012 @ 7:01 am

    The Celluon Magic Cube turns any table or surface into a virtual keyboard or multi-touch mouse with its amazing laser projection and motion detection technology…

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