It's not science fiction--it's almost here! For years, researchers have been trying to develop a car that drives itself, since most car crashes are due to human error. Now they've created a car that can be controlled by a driver's THOUGHTS. German engineers have developed a car with speed and direction that can be controlled by your mind. You just think "right here" and the car will turn and plan a fresh route. In New Scientist, Paul Marks quotes the research team's website as saying, "Our test drives showed that there is only a slight delay between the intended command and the actual reaction of the car. This is, of course, a demonstration and is not roadworthy yet--but in the long run, human-machine interfaces like this could have huge potential in combination with autonomously driven cars."
This could be a great boon for disabled drivers. Paralyzed people are already being taught to control a computer cursor using only their brains. Soon they'll be able to play games on their ipads. A new device demonstrated at the 2010 winter Olympics allowed users in Vancouver to control the lights on a tower in Toronto using only their minds. Now the compnay has invented a modified version of an iPad game that can be manipulated by the brain's alpha and beta waves.
Getting good at this game is kind of like playing golf, according to InteraXon chief executive Ariel Garten. In New Scientist, Peter Nowak quotes her as saying, "To play golf, for example, you have to be incredibly relaxed. You also have to be highly focused on what you're doing. That peak moment of 'in the zone' of focus and relaxation is the optimal state you want to be able to achieve." Especially if your brain waves are the only thing you can move. She says, "I'm often asked if we're creating this technology for people who are disabled and the answer is no, we're creating it for everyone. Once you open it up, you have six billion people driving the innovation." It could make you a better golfer, anyway.
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