On the pages of Medgadget we’ve covered interesting interfaces that allow one being’s brain to activate actions in another. Rats have been made telepathic and humans finally won the ability to control the wagging of a rat’s tail by simply thinking the right thoughts. What’s next you say in the world of applied neuroscience?
Researchers at University of Washington are now reporting that they developed a completely non-invasive brain-to-brain interface which allowed one of the neuroscientists to trigger a finger of another to click a keyboard key. The system is essentially built from off-the-shelf components that include an electroencephalography (EEG) cap and software to read the brain waves of the sender, and a Magstim Rapid2 high frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) system that can accurately excite axons in the cortex. The sender played a mind game that involved imagining moving his hand to fire at a target. When that signal was detected through EEG, a message was sent to the TMS system which fired a magnetic pulse at the region of the brain responsible for the right index finger. Miraculously, the receiver clicked the spacebar every time the game player shot at the target. One small click for a neuroscientist, one giant leap for neuroscience.
See for yourself:
University of Washington: Researcher controls colleague’s motions in 1st human brain-to-brain interface…