Fb Brain

Facebook explores brain-computer interface technology to control AR wearables

Posted on July 31, 2019 by Medtech[y] Staff

In their third installment of their Inside Facebook Reality Labs blog series, Facebook delved into their recent brain-computer interface (BCI) research as a way to control future augmented reality interfaces, including augmented reality (AR) glasses.

The Facebook Reality Labs team has been testing the ability to decode single imagined words with non-invasive technologies, and they expect to get their first results from our wearable prototypes in the near term. Even developing the ability to decode a handful of words such as "select" or "delete" could expand how consumers and healthcare professionals interact with current VR technologies and tomorrow's AR glasses.

What to know:

  1. Facebook funded and partnered a UCSF research paper entitled,“Real-time decoding of question-and-answer speech dialogue using human cortical activity,” which was published in Nature today.
  2. Facebook's goal of building a non-invasive, wearable device that lets people type by imagining themselves talking would have a profound impact on the healthcare industry. From how physicians interact with their patients, to a more interactive and real-time operating room experience, the creation of AR wearables that have broader applications would easily fill a need in healthcare.
  3. BCI technology could also be used for patients with ALS (or Lou Gehrig's disease) who no longer have the ability to speak. Speaking through imagining instead of relying on the typed work, acting to assist these patients.

While BCI and all-day wearable technology is a ways off, it may not be crazy to think that a decade from now we will have the ability to type directly from our brains.

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