Say goodbye to joysticks and switchboards and all those boring robot-controlling doodads. Thanks to Honda's Brain Machine Interface, robots can now be controlled with your thoughts alone.
Japan came one step closer to its dream of a robot-filled utopia today when Honda announced the successful creation of its Brain Machine Interface, a technology that allows humans to control robots, and potentially all "intelligent" machines, with their thoughts alone.
The BMI, which looks a tad like Dark Helmet's helmet from Spaceballs, tracks two key phenomena in the human thought process: electrical current and blood flow. The BMI uses EEG to measure electrical potential on the scalp, while NIRS keeps track of the changes in the blood current in your brain. Then after some "statistical processing of the complex information from these two types of sensors," you're in business.
In Honda's experiments, the test subject simply imagined moving a robot's body part without any actual physical movement. The BMI then analyzed the data from brain waves and blood flow to figure out what the test subject was thinking about and then transferred the data over to the ASIMO robot, which then performed the imagined action. According to Honda, the accuracy rate was more than 90% during tests.
The possibilities of this aren't just limited to creating a massive robot army that can be remote controlled by people just sitting in a room thinking, though. "This technology will be further developed for the application to human-friendly products in the future by integrating it with intelligent technologies and/or robotic technologies," Honda said.