Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Video Game Controllers Use Brainwaves Instead of Joysticks

Posted By on Tue, May 29, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Recently, BW told you about new advances in medical technology that allow the disabled to control robotic limbs with their thoughts.

An article in today's Wall Street Journal discusses similar technology that is being used to control virtual environments for video games.

From the article:

The gadgets translate brain waves into digital information and beam it wirelessly to computers or other devices.

So far, the headsets are confined to mostly digital interfaces—videogames and movies whose plots can be altered with the mind—although in some cases real-world objects have been used, like a pair of catlike ears that move depending on a person's mood.

The technology is still in very early phases, meaning its potential uses are barely being explored. A variety of games are available at prices as low as $5, but the technology could theoretically be used for actually maneuvering, or even living in a complex virtual environment ala the sci-fi dreams of geeks everywhere.

But it could also be used for all manner of long-running dystopian nightmares. The article says that several prisons in the UK are using the technology for behavior modification of violent prisoners, and it also delves into the therapeutic potential of the devices.

Goodbye Konami code. It was nice knowing you.

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