Japan's insatiable love for robots and mind-reading technology has converged in the form of a new government-industry partnership. That means Japanese consumers can look forward to robots and electronics controllable by thought alone within a decade, according to Agence France-Presse.
The Nikkei daily first reported on this development yesterday by citing unnamed government sources, and so technical details remain a bit murky. Any such devices would supposedly use sensor-mounted headsets to analyze the electrical signals and brain blood-flow patterns of users.
The lack of specs has not prevented the collective sci-fi imagination of said sources from running wild. Future mind-controlled devices would include television sets and smart phones which compose text messages by thought. That's not unlike some brain-interface devices already slated to hit the market, but presumably they'd be much less expensive for daily-use items.
Other possible applications include a car navigation system which searches for restaurants when it detects the driver thinking on his or her empty stomach, and air-conditioners which adjust the temperature based on feeling too warm or cold. That's a huge stretch by today's standards.
Of course, the headsets would also allow the elderly or disabled to communicate with robot servitors and alert them to when help is required. We trust that won't lead to a future with the first robot-assisted homicide, but at least current mind-controlled fighting robots leave little to worry about.
We previously investigated the latest challenges of mind-reading technology in an extensive feature, which involves some serious numbers crunching and a few good brain scanners. Japan's upcoming effort could put some serious financial muscle behind this booming area of research, given the involvement of corporate giants such as Toyota, Honda and Hitachi, as well as top universities and research institutions.
Perhaps a mind-controlled future still sounds creepy to some, even if it's the consumer presumably doing the controlling. But at least it's a different approach from Intel's vision of consumer brain implants.
[via Agence France-Presse]
surrogates staring bruce willis.
Forgive me for being paranoid, but 'government-industry partnership'?
Don't know about you, but when 'governments' and 'mind-reading technology' come together, I tend to get a little frisky.
So I might be able to have a mind controlled TV, and maybe even have a mind-controlled robot fetch me beer and chips while I watch the game. I won't have to waste labor pushing remote buttons so can use all energy to shovel food and pour beer into my face - such a dream come true will give new dimension to being a couch potato.
It will be nice to see this finally hit the market. The possibilities are endless when combined with intelligent nano-machines. I find it odd that people still think so inline with current tech when looking at future tech like this. Once control mechanisms get small enough to become incredibly portable and useful, other technologies will have advanced as well.
Much like the old predictions of television being beamed directly to your head, that is likely to be exactly the case by the time these devices become widespread. So it isn't like you would be using a clicker anyway!
could this be used for piloting predator drones?
We already have mind controlled robots in America...they are called Obama supporters.
I don't care how fancy his new toy is.
He's wearing my grandmother's shoes.
People are already having their minds controlled have you've meet Glenn Beck supporters? They'd jump off a bridge if he said so.
Man some of you people are just plain boring, ya have nothing else better to do but to sit on a couch shoveling junk down your craw and getting fat, man some of you just plain suck get a life people, live a little well in your case a lot!
Sorry i was directing that at chris87654