This New Tech Lets Humans Control Turtles With Their Minds

Posted: Apr 1 2017, 3:36am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

This New Tech Lets Humans Control Turtles With Their Minds
A human controller influences the turtle's escape behavior by sending left and right signals via Wi-Fi to a control system on the back of the turtle. Credit: Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST)
  • Controlling turtle motion with human thought

A novel form of technology allows humans to control turtles with their minds.

Via a tapping into a turtle’s fight or flight response, scientists have directed its movements through the sheer power of human thought. This human-turtle interface is something which is a very exciting phenomenon.

The experiment may lead to developments where future search and rescue technology gets built on a real-time basis. A brain-to-computer interface lies at the core of this experiment.

This reads brain waves in order to control robotics. Then there is a computer-to-brain interface which used robotics to control brains.

The turtle in question has a camera fitted on top of its head. Also the camera provides a live feed to a human. All the human being has to do is think whether he or she wants to move in one direction or the other or stay where they are.

This is all dependent on what they see in the live feed. These thoughts are gauged by a computer and relayed via Wi-Fi to a receiver on top of the turtle’s shell. This receiver controls a semi-circular blind connected to the shell. This moves from left to right. Just thinking will trigger the reflex.

The researchers furthermore got the turtles to find their ways through a simple obstacle course. The first trial took place indoors while the second and third ones took place outdoors.

The human controller was 3 miles away from the turtle. Turtles were chosen in this experiment because they display classic escape mechanisms. Turtles also have higher cognitive functions which make them ideal for such experiments.

Researchers have controlled other creatures such as cockroaches via tiny electrodes implanted in their neural pathways.

Even pigeons have been controlled in this manner so that they show particular flight patterns. Such experiments may pace the way for military surveillance and reconnaissance in the times to come.

The research was published in the Journal of Bionic Engineering in a paper titled “Remote Navigation of Turtle by Controlling Instinct Behavior via Human Brain-computer Interface”.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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