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Use Your Brain: New Peripherals Offer Hands Free Gaming


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#1 IMG News

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Posted 28 September 2005 - 08:59 AM

As reported on Worthplaying.com, CyberLearning Technology recently launched SMART BrainGames, video game peripherals allowing players to control the action with their minds. Using technology created by NASA the peripherals use electroencephalogram (EEG) Neurofeedback to safely and accurately measure brainwave activity. Through concentration players can learn to control the action in games.

Using popular titles such as Gran Tourismo, Need For Speed, and Tony Hawk, the SMART BrainGames system rewards players who are able to focus attention and concentrate quickly, calmly and deeply. The system monitors brain activity continuously during gameplay using electroencephalogram (EEG) signals. The faster you get focused, and the longer you stay focused, the better your performance. If you feel anxious or lose concentration, performance declines. Players are strongly motivated to learn how to achieve calm focus in order to stay competitive and improve game results. The skills acquired during game play can be used in life and in learning situations, and parents and teachers often report dramatic improvements in behavior and ability to follow instructions.
Currently the SMART system is only designed to work with Playstation games, but if it becomes popular it might be seen on other platforms as well. For more information check out the site below.
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#2 Tesseract

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Posted 28 September 2005 - 10:13 AM

It seems to me that this would only be equivalent to a one-dimensional input device, like a throttle, as it measures a single quantity, namely the player's degree of concentration. I don't see how this would be very useful in controlling existing games.

Also, concentrating on the mechanics of game control is extremely tiring. Players who are good at a game just relax and let muscle memory do its thing while they think about their larger strategy.

The WorthPlaying.com article doesn't have any links to more information or even to the web sites of the companies involved. I found this with Google though. Amusingly, the EEG sensors are embedded in what looks like an ordinary bike helmet. Unfortunately, the product site itself is also almost devoid of details, and doesn't seem to answer any of the questions I have raised in this post.