January 4th, 2010

Communicating Using Brain Waves and a Computer

By Kelley Luckstein

Scientists are developing mind-to-machine technology that could enable people who cannot speak to communicate using their own brain waves and a computer screen.

Recently, neuroscientists at the Mayo Clinic campus in Jacksonville, Fla., demonstrated that brain waves, focusing on a matrix of letters, can project letters onto a monitor - with the goal of eventually typing out words and sentences. For example, by concentrating on the letter "q," that "q" will appear on the screen…

"We want to emphasize that this really is at the beginning," said Jerry Shih, MD, the Mayo scientist who, with Dean Krusienski, PhD., of the University of North Florida, studied the technology in six epilepsy patients.  Still, "I think the potential applications are wide-ranging," he added. "We want to make this a practical type of device that will have an impact on their function, and quality of life."

US News & World Report, 01/4/10

Tags: brain waves, Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, mind to machine computer, Neurology

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