Ok… so I’ve taken a little bit of artistic freedom in calling it an App. However, there is a complex interface of software and hardware that utilizes EEG readings, converts them into audio via a software interface, feeds that into an iPhone and SIRI will make a phone call for you.
So it’s not as simple and intuitive as most iphone apps, but it’s certainly a start!
There is some controversy over whether these hackers from Project Black Mirror are using clever camera tricks or actually engineered software and hardware to make this magic mind-reading smartphone possible. That’s entirely understandable. But, honestly, this concept is really not as unbelievable as it sounds. If you consider the fact that they stated they programmed it based upon one specific persons EEG readings/thought patterns, then it’s actually fairly simplistic in design.
All they have really done is created a visual trigger on an EEG that can map to predefined voice commands. It’s pretty cool, and it’s definitely something new and innovative, but it’s not so far-fetched and futuristic that they would have to rely upon clever camera tricks to make the above video.
According to Mashable:
The hackers explain that they used the EEG pads to record the “signature brain patterns” of 25 Siri-based commands. By pairing the signatures with the commands, they effectively create a brain pattern-to-voice dictionary.
That means their system doesn’t necessarily know what a person is thinking, but it knows that certain electrical activity in the brain translates to certain commands.
When the system identifies the electrical signature in the brain, it feeds the appropriate command to a sound synthesizer chip, the audio output of which is plugged into the iPhone’s microphone jack.
Give hackers a little more credit. There are some brilliant minds that are masterful tinkerers and do things like build battle-bots in their basements. Why is it so far-fetched to think that someone could have your iPhone read your mind.
Perhaps I’m a little more easy to convince to most because I totally want this.
I may very well lose you in the nerdy-abyss here, but I would totally plug into the Matrix. If I could download information into my brain via USB (3.0 of course, geez, what do you think, I’m barbaric?!?) I would totally sign up for that. The curiosity that constantly consumes my existence and the constant desire to know more with a real and unshakable need to ask ‘why’ have me often pining for a way to get more information as efficiently as possible.
I remember fondly when my 7th grade science teacher who would often tell students that “you can’t gain knowledge through osmosis” as they laid their head on their books instead of opening up and reading the pages. As clever a statement it was, I have to admit I would often sit in class and think “well, why not?” I knew it was impossible, but the very thought that once could passively acquire knowledge was so very interesting to me. I’ve never forgot that statement or the desire I had to learn about the layers of the earth simply by placing a book to my forehead and absorbing all it had inside.
I’m just saying… it would be really cool.
So if someone tells me I could potentially control my iPhone by just thinking about what I want it to do, I get a nerdy little twinkle in my eye, and I’m reminded of that magical feeling I first had when I got my very first iPhone. There is something beautiful and touching about technology to me… even the creepy, science-fiction, big-brother, Orwellian types of technology that most people are afraid of.
Thanks to Mashable for enlightening me to this story and for leading me on a fun-filled journey through the depths of my nerdy little mind. It was fun!
The hackers at Project Black Mirror posted this video in an effort to get some funding, I sure hope it pays off for them!
Read more about this fun-filled topic: Siri, Read My Mind: Did Hackers Just Build a Brain-Powered iPhone?