Facebook: from brain-computer interface to muscle signal tracker21. July 2021
Facebook: from brain-computer interface to muscle signal tracker
San Francisco, 7/20/2021
Facebook has dropped plans for a brain-reading device and will instead focus on a wrist-worn interface for virtual reality applications. The company is turning away from brain-computer interfaces and will instead pursue experimental controllers that “read” muscle signals in the wrist to control devices.
Facebook will not pursue its efforts to develop a Protoype headset that would have allowed users to control a computer with their thoughts.
Instead, it will continue work on the electromyography-controlled wristband, which will use technology from CTRL-Labs, a neural interface startup acquired by Facebook in 2019.
A head-mounted optical device for silent speech for the consumer market “is still a very long way off,” said physicist and neuroscientist Mark Chevillet, who worked on the project for Facebook.
Still, a recent research paper shows that the technology, called a “neuroprosthesis,” can decode and transcribe speech in a paralyzed person who cannot speak.
Elon Musk’s Neuralink is developing brain-computer interfaces that could one day synchronize the human brain with advanced AI to control computers, prosthetics and more.
The CEO, who described the device as “a Fitbit in your skull,” said it could cure neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia and merge humanity with artificial intelligence.
In a series of tweets, Musk said Neuralink will allow people with paralysis to control smartphones with their minds faster than someone using their thumbs.
In April, Musk posted a video of a macaque monkey playing the game “Pong” with its brain.