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This MIT Invention Might Change The Way We Communicate

Credit: MIT Media Lab

Most recent scientific inventions sound like they are straight out of a movie or video game. From cargo planes that double as hospitals to driverless cars, human inventions seem to be taking us closer to a cyberpunk world.

Even the Microsoft Holo-Lens, an augmented reality headset for Windows systems, looks like something out of the movie Judge Dredd.

Engineers continue to change the way we use computers with each peripheral technology they create. Researchers at MIT have been hard at work looking into true hands-free typing.

Two students, Arnav Kapur and Pattie Maes, worked together at the school’s Media Lab to develop the Alter Ego, a headset rumored to be able to read what you are thinking and type it out onto a computer. During the course of their research, the students found the brain shoots signals into the facial muscles at the mere thought of saying something.

Using electrodes placed along the cheek, jaw, and chin, the Alter Ego reads neuromuscular signals in the jaw and face to easily recognize words or numbers. Testing the Alter Ego included things like controlling Roku players and answering math questions. By the end of the study, the mind-reading headset was an operation with a 92% success rate.

When we live in a world where robots check people into hotels and cars can drive themselves, it’s no surprise that people thought up the Alter Ego.

The headset may pave the way for future technologies, allowing us full control over our computers and cellphones with just our minds.

How crazy would it be if we could also use the Alter Ego to send near-telepathic messages to each other?

Arnav Kapur had also stated in an interview that his and Pattie’s headset gives a person “superpowers”. Is it possible the student has invented a technology close to what we see in comic books and video games?

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