Freer Logic has created an armband sensor that picks up brainwaves and sends signals wirelessly to a PC, so that a user could potentially control the computer with her mind.
Called BodyWave, the device monitors the brain’s physiologic signal through the body. The device can be worn on the arm or leg. The company points out that such technology is less intrusive than headsets or wired sensors.
The device monitors levels of attention, cognitive processing, relaxation, and anxiety or stress.
Freer sees many applications for such a device. One example would be sports training, where BodyWave would be able to tell when the user is in a “peak performance state to sink a putt,” the company says.
Another example would be driving safety. Since the device monitors attentiveness, it could warn users when their attention has drifted off. Since it monitors stress levels, it could help people train to perform their jobs during periods of high stress.
Freer also suggests that the device could be tied to a cell phone, which could provide feedback to the user and help them learn to relax or meditate.
Freer has tested the device with its own computer simulations, where users are able to activate and deactivate the simulations just by thinking about it – or rather, by maximizing their attentive state while minimizing stress.
In the past, Freer has used similar technology, but that was in a helmet lined with sensors to pick up brainwaves from the head. The company acknowledges that the approach can be invasive and inconvenient.
Freer says it is planning to take the armband concept further, to develop a wristwatch or something that can be hidden within a user’s clothing to pick up brainwaves.
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