Voice and Gesture are Old School - the future is controlling things with your Mind!

By Tom Emrich

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As you all know, I am giddy with excitement over attending the conference of the future this weekend - Engadget Expand. One of the speakers is from my home turf here in Canada - Ariel Garten, the CEO of InteraXon.

InteraXon provides hardware and software interfaces which lets you control computing with your mind. Yep - you read that right, your mind! All this talk about voice and gesture control and here is a company skipping over all that to link computing directly to our brains.

Their technology works by converting brainwaves into digital signals that are used as inputs into a computer - wearable devices, smartphones, smart TVs, smart cars or basically any of the connected items we expect through the internet of things.

InteraXon believes that “Brainwave-controlled interfaces (BCI) are the next steps in the big evolution in technology”

InteraXon’s newest consumer product is Muse a brainwave sensor headband with 4 built-in brainwave sensors based on EEG technology which detect levels, combinations and proportions of the 5 key types of brainwaves. 

Here is how it works according to the website:

  1. Just upload one of our custom applications to your smart phone or tablet.
  2. Pop on your Muse. It should rest comfortably on the upper forehead, and sit behind the ears like a pair of eyeglasses. Clear any big tufts of hair out of the way, so that the earpiece of your Muse headband can make good contact with your skin.
  3. Pop in a pair of your favorite ear buds and start the app. The Bluetooth should connect you once the app is running.
  4. Customize your app—choose the length of time you want to spend, the soundtrack and, when applicable, the type of environment.

Wearable devices and especially new input controls for computing (including controlling our smartphones and tablets) are making massive headlines lately especially with the reveal of Google Glasses (Voice) and Leap Motion and Thalmic Lab’s Myo (Gesture Control). Time will tell which type of input will rule the computing world of the future. My guess is that we may see a combination of voice, touch, gesture and brainwaves moving forward depending on the interface and use case. One thing is for sure, typing and even touch are looking pretty dated in the face of this Sci-Fi interaction.  

BONUS MUSE DEMO from Engadget from CES 2013

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