Monkeys Control Wheelchairs Using The Power Of Their Brains

Posted: Mar 4 2016, 7:50am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

 
Monkeys Control Wheelchairs Using the Power of their Brains
  • Monkeys Control Wheelchairs Using the Power of their Brains

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A wireless interface allows monkeys to control wheelchairs using the power of their brains.

The computer experts are at it again. This time they have developed a wireless brain interface that allows monkeys to control a wheelchair using the power of their thoughts.

This could be extended so that those people who are paralyzed could control robots with their minds which then do their work for them. Before this new experiment in mind control, primates were trained to use their thought processes via BMIs (Brain Machine Interfaces) to control prosthetic limbs.

It is possible to take recordings from implants fixed in the cortex regions of the primate brains and use them to control movements of machines.

While at present a wheelchair has been brought into a mode of locomotion thanks to this scheme, in the future other things including living parts could be controlled via the aforementioned methodology.

No physical medium was needed for this almost telepathic arrangement. It was more like magic, although at such an advanced stage of technology, the whole process can hardly be differentiated from magic. The details of this study may be perused in Nature.

This happens to be the first such experiment using BMIs that is a success. It involves whole body locomotion and is a wonder of computer science which has introduced a brand new world to mankind.

Via the implanting of a wireless device in the brains of monkeys, it was found that they could easily fulfill their wanderlust using an electronic wheelchair. All it took was 300 neurons.

They traversed the paths using a special method of navigation. It’s part of the Walk Again Project. This is a scheme that has the goal of allowing paralyzed people to transmit their brainwaves to machines which then do their work for them.

The machines include artificial limbs and other helpful robotic gadgets. It is not just a matter of building a wheelchair that runs on brainwaves. No.

What is the ultimate objective is the construction of robotic exoskeletons that serve all purposes that can make the body of man almost superhuman in its nature.

Even if a person is severely paralyzed, he or she could use this method to control various aspects of his or her home environment and accomplish the chores of daily life in a jiffy.

The experiment began many years ago. Today it is in its prime and ready to takeoff into the stratosphere of scientific know-how.

An article on the work of this interface was published Thursday in the online journal Scientific Reports.

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