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Evolving media: Brainwave Input

From: Creative Inspirations: Dale Herigstad & Schematic, Interactive Design Agency

Video: Evolving media: Brainwave Input

Dale Herigstad: So another kind of input-- we have been working with Emotive in San Francisco, based in San Francisco, who has a product which is a beautifully designed headset, a little head gear thing, designed by IDEO that goes, you fix it out on your head and what it does is you can do cognitive actions, also with your hands and body. But you can imagine that there are also some non-conscious things that are coming from your mind. How do you utilize that without having to consciously think of it and click a button? So what it can do is it can actually track facial emotions, there's a gyroscope in there. But it also is reading our eye blinking, eye direction, your mouth, whether you are smiling or not smiling through picking up the muscle motion through your brain.

Evolving media: Brainwave Input

Dale Herigstad: So another kind of input-- we have been working with Emotive in San Francisco, based in San Francisco, who has a product which is a beautifully designed headset, a little head gear thing, designed by IDEO that goes, you fix it out on your head and what it does is you can do cognitive actions, also with your hands and body. But you can imagine that there are also some non-conscious things that are coming from your mind. How do you utilize that without having to consciously think of it and click a button? So what it can do is it can actually track facial emotions, there's a gyroscope in there. But it also is reading our eye blinking, eye direction, your mouth, whether you are smiling or not smiling through picking up the muscle motion through your brain.

So probably the most interesting thing about this for me was utilizing cognitive, I mean, you're actually making things happen. What this is picking up is not his hands, but it's inside his head. He is thinking lift this up. He has assigned his brainwave pattern to certain functions: lift, move, rotate whatever, like that. And I have used this by the way and it does work. But you assign that and then you can actually -- he is using his hands because it's easier to think that way. It's interesting he can't stop using his hand, but if you put his hands down, you can actually just think it and it would raise up and raise down.

So some very interesting applications for the handicapped and this is for people, you could imagine, who are quadriplegic and can't make use their limbs, could actually this to control certain functions on a computer. And then another interesting type of activity that's being registered through brain input is actually your emotional state. And in this case, we created a kind of a mock-up of a content delivery system where you could, with the headset on, you are using your hand through your remote control or other kinds of hand navigation or gesture and it's presenting content to you, but it's also in real- time picking up your response to that and sort of taking away and bringing up new stuff.

So you could see there is sort of-- again it's just picking up brain activity without you having to consciously click on things. This particular notion is interesting. One way to understand it is that they are using it for games where if you wear the headset and you are playing a normal game with the regular game controller, what this is registering, what the headset registering is your emotional response to, say, the differences between frustration and boredom. So if it's sensing you are getting bored, it will automatically raise the level of game up to be more difficult. Or in the reverse, if you are really getting frustrated, it will drop the level of the game down a bit. So again, those are actions you would normally have to click through a button but it's just picking up that data from your head.

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