Business News

Tuesday 16 January 2018

Google Glass gets 'mind-control' app

Clare Cullen wearing Google Glass
Clare Cullen wearing Google Glass

Sophie Curtis

A Google Glass application that enables people to control the wearable device using their mind alone has been launched today.

Developed by London-based startup This Place, MindRDR is a free open source app that bridges the NeuroSky EEG biosensor – which measures brainwaves to translate brain activity into action – and Google Glass.

The NeuroSky EEG biosensor is a single chip that can sense the signals from the human brain, filter out extraneous noise and electrical interference and convert these signals to digital power

By simply concentrating and relaxing, users can reportedly take photos and share them on Twitter and Facebook.

MindRDR presents Google Glass wearers with visual feedback throughout the process to demonstrate how close they are to taking a picture, and then share it on social media channels.

The visual feedback consists of a horizontal line that sits in the middle of the screen, and moves closer to the top of the screen the more users concentrate. Once the line reaches the top of the screen, Google Glass takes the photo.

At the next screen users either concentrate to move the line to the top of the screen and share it, or relax to move the line to the bottom to discard the image and take another photo.

“Google Glass is one of the world’s most recognisable and popular pieces of wearable technology, but after getting our hands on it, the challenge of connecting it to brainwaves was one we could not resist," said Dusan Hamlin, founder and CEO of This Place.

"Currently, users either have to touch it or use voice commands, which are restrictive for some social situations and for users with disabilities. All we could think was: how can we make the user’s experience even better? We wanted to realise the true potential of Glass by allowing users to control it with their minds.”

This Place claims that MindRDR could give those with conditions like locked-in syndrome, severe multiple sclerosis or quadriplegia the opportunity to interact with the wider world through wearable technology like Google Glass.

The company is reportedly in conversations with Professor Stephen Hawking, among others, about the possibilities MindRDR could bring as the product evolves.

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