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Input Devices Science

Typing With Your Brain 262

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the what-a-waste-of-the-force dept.
destinyland writes "This article asks, 'Why bother to type a document using a keyboard when you can write it by simply thinking about the letters?' A brain wave study presented at the 2009 annual meeting of the American Epilepsy Society shows that people with electrodes in their brains can 'type' using just their minds. The study involved electrocorticography — a sheet of electrodes laid directly on the surface of the brain after a surgical incision into the skull. ('We were able to consistently predict the desired letters for our patients at or near 100 percent accuracy,' explains one Mayo clinic neurologist.) And besides typing, there's new brain wave applications that can now turn brain waves into music and even Twitter status updates — by thought alone."
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Typing With Your Brain

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  • by Jeian (409916) on Wednesday December 23, 2009 @01:42PM (#30536844)

    Maybe I'm stating the obvious, but I can think of a whole lot of ways where broadcasting what I'm thinking could be highly, ah, embarrassing.

  • by fyngyrz (762201) on Wednesday December 23, 2009 @02:14PM (#30537212) Homepage Journal

    Women make up for in detail what men do in quantity in that regard.

    Cite? Where's your data? As far as you go, I'd be perfectly willing to accept that's how you roll, but women in general... the indirect evidence doesn't seem to support this.

    In my experience, men are far more visual than women are. I think one obvious chunk of evidence for this was the pre-Internet era proliferation of men's picture magazines while one or two comparable woman's magazines (e.g. Playgirl) addressed what they thought might be a similar market. Also that the two leading magazines, Playboy and Penthouse, both specialized in visually rich pictures, including the surroundings, environment, etc., while the less successful ones kept it simple, not to say gynecological.

    Another tick in this column is the huge market for makeup, sexy clothes, etc., for women; not so much for men. It would seem that men are looking specifically for visual stimulation on a level that women are not. And that women know it, because they certainly buy this stuff in large enough quantities without demanding comparable "peacock" performance from the male population.

  • by BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) on Wednesday December 23, 2009 @02:33PM (#30537384) Homepage Journal
    That's a good point that I think a lot of people miss when it comes to new interfacing technology. Sure, it takes some getting used to, and at first, it's probably going to suck and you are going to want to go back to the old, 'better' way of doing things. However, given consistent use and a bit of patience our minds and bodies are remarkable at learning new interfaces. Think about the the first time you drove a stick shift. You probably popped the clutch a few times and squealed some tires and killed the engine once or twice. However, after a month or two getting a feel for the clutch everyday while driving, you begin to master the motions and, eventually, working the clutch becomes an art form in and of itself.

    This is one of the underlying principles of Kung-Fu. Through disciplined, consistent repetition, our bodies develop habits all of our own. Martial arts mastery comes when your body has ritualized so many action-reaction combinations that you can start combining them in new, more inventive, more powerful ways. The same thing goes for an editor like vi. Eventually, you master enough key strokes that you don't even need a mouse anymore. The same thing happened with typing when the keyboard first came about and, now, it is happening again with mobile platform keyboards (I can text with two thumbs as fast as I could type with two hands three years ago).

    My bet would be that, as these neuroscience interfaces develop with the future, our 'mental-fu' will start to develop just like the Kung-Fu we practice to learn any number of physical interfaces and actions. Before you know it, we may be living in a world where our very wills could be pitted against one another in mental show downs. I, for one, welcome the idea of interfaces that force humanity to start mastering and disciplining its own mental habits on a wide-scale.
  • by Unordained (262962) <unordained_slash ... @pseudotheos.com> on Wednesday December 23, 2009 @02:59PM (#30537638) Homepage

    Rating Attractiveness: Consensus Among Men, Not Women, Study Finds [sciencedaily.com]

    Men's judgments of women's attractiveness were based primarily around physical features and they rated highly those who looked thin and seductive. Most of the men in the study also rated photographs of women who looked confident as more attractive.

    As a group, the women rating men showed some preference for thin, muscular subjects, but disagreed on how attractive many men in the study were. Some women gave high attractiveness ratings to the men other women said were not attractive at all.

  • Dasher (Score:3, Interesting)

    by orgelspieler (865795) <w0lfie@@@mac...com> on Wednesday December 23, 2009 @03:13PM (#30537780) Journal
    I wonder why they didn't try something like Dasher [cam.ac.uk]. This uses simple two-axis control to choose letters as they fly by. I would think this kind of method would be better than having to train for each individual letter.
  • by girlintraining (1395911) on Monday December 28, 2009 @08:29PM (#30577506)

    Does political activism really carry the same cachet as skydiving? I guess I need to start attending those Green Party meetings again. Really -- I was running for office before family issues derailed my erstwhile campaign. I just pretty much assumed that politics was a huge turn-off. (I know that's how my ex felt!)

    To that degree, yes, I imagine it would be. But the same could be said for anything that consumes so much of your time you don't have much left-over for your partner. Admittedly, it works better for lesbians than hetero-couples, but it's an activity you can do with your significant other and it shows that you're not just a couch potato. Like I said, just try to show that you have some ambition in your life; Something about you that's a little edgy but not over the top. Brain storm awhile... and good luck with the ladies!

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