No more keyboards in the future, as Facebook is envisioning a future in which you could type directly just by thinking about the words. Facebook is actually researching mind reading through brain computing technology, as it revealed in the F8 conference held in San Jose. The social media giant is working on the technology for a brain to computer, speech to text interface, which would translate thoughts directly from the brain to the computer screen. You wouldn’t need any voice recognition software or manual type anymore. Read on to find out more:
Facebook’s brain computing technology
The concept of this innovative idea is to use non-invasive sensors that can read what you want to express, and convert it into readable text. Rebecca Dugan, the Head of Facebook’s R&D division, known as Building 8, says that this idea is not something impossible or crazy. She showed the vide from Stanford University of a woman who typed eight words in a minute, with the help of a tiny electrode implanted in her brain, which enabled her brain to move the cursor over the keyboard.
Brain computing technology by Facebook may become a reality in some years
According to Rebecca Dugan, the goal now for Facebook is to create the technology that could help a person type 100 words per minute based on thoughts. The purpose of this new technology is to become a kind of speech prosthetic for people who suffer from communication disorders, or as a new way of input for AR. Facebook’s brain computing technology is being developed to detect activity only in the region of the brain which translates thoughts into speech. It’s not about decoding random thoughts, mind reading through brain computing technology will require new sensors to be built which can detect the activity of the brain at lightning speeds. This technology does exist as of now, but the company has over 60 scientists working on its research and development.
Communication through the skin
Image Source : tctechcrunch2011
Facebook’s brain computing technology is just one aspect of the company endeavour to propel communication to the next level. They are also developing technology which could communicate with people through their skin. According to Facebook, this new technology will be on the same lines as the way we listen, with the help of cochlea. Cochlea translates sound into different frequencies, and sends them to the brain which decodes these frequencies into sounds we understand. Facebook will be using the skin in a similar manner, to enable communication via your skin. Details on this new project are scarce, but Facebook compared this new mode of communication technology to Braille. Visually impaired people translate surface textures to words, and skin interface technology will be somewhat similar to Braille.
Facebook engineers working on skin-hearing use a system of actuators which are tuned to 16 frequency bands. One of their test subjects could hear nine words through his skin.
Elon Musk’s “neural lace”
SpaceX and Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk, which is better known for his Mars colonization venture, has revealed that he would be launching a company Neuralink, which would work on brain to computer interface tech, called “neural lace”. With the advent of wireless interfaces between computers and the human brain, humans would be able to keep pace with the rapid advances of AI, and won’t be left behind in the race of new technology.
There might be benefits to the new technology being developed by Facebook, but no one can predict the repercussions until it is launched and running. We just have to wait and watch, and hope that this technology would only prove beneficial for mankind.