Friday, February 21, 2014

The promise of electronic telepathy fight against ... -

Atlantico: Recently, a monkey has been able to move the arms of another monkey, simply by thinking. What is the process implemented? How does the device electrode computer which helped translate thoughts monkey “master” and operate the arm of the second monkey?

Fabrice Papillon : The experiment, conducted by an American team at Cornell University (and published in the journal Nature Communications) involves two rhesus macaques and a computer. The idea was the following: to prove that the brain, by thought alone could control a member inert, paralyzed, while all communication “physical” (by nerves, muscles) was not . But instead of doing everything with a single monkey, disabled, they chose two monkeys for a more convincing demonstration. The first monkey was facing a computer screen. Its brain was provided with electrodes for sensing its brainwaves. These were then interpreted by a powerful software to learn the intentions of the monkey (his wishes, actions he wanted to achieve, etc..). Then, at the other end, a cable was connected to a second arm whose monkey was completely paralyzed (after anesthesia). To be specific, the cable was connected to the spinal cord within the spinal column, whose function is to transmit the nerve impulses to the muscles. The result is staggering: in 82% of cases, when the first monkey “thought” put a cursor to a target heart on his computer screen, his intentions were interpreted by the software via the electrodes, and transmitted to the spinal cord of the second monkey. This then grabbed a joystick, like a video game, and moving the cursor to turn the heart of the right target! thought the first monkey was therefore transmitted via software and cable, the arm of the second monkey was for him! And it was repeated more than 8 out of 10 times … Without mention that scientists have even reversed the roles several times.. monkeys “master” became the “running” monkey and vice versa And the results were equally impressive

What does this mean for the future? Will there be prostheses led by thought? What are the applications that we would be able to design, if indeed such a technical feat is possible for humans?

course, the idea is to achieve the same feat in a single monkey and ultimately humans. Take the case of a quadriplegic person completely paralyzed Following a serious accident, for example. Usually paralysis from a section of the spinal cord in the spinal column. The idea, as we see, is to link the brain (via electrodes) to a computer that interpret thoughts, then through a cable connected to the spinal cord below the breaking point of the accident, transmit nerve impulses to the muscles to allow him to use his members! It would therefore of “by-pass”, short spinal cord and long neuronal axons (long stems of our neuromotor neurons that extend from the brain to the muscles through the spinal cord) to transmit artificially nerve and muscle information. Of course, such a prospect is very distant. Closer to home, a Franco-Japanese team that I know well, is developing a technique may be less complex, less distant, but equally stunning. The team of Prof. Abderrhamane Kheddar, near Tokyo, Joint Robotics Laboratory (CNRS Joint / AIST), managed by the same type of device to translate the thoughts of a man (a student for the experience) by a humanoid robot. In essence, the student, equipped with electrodes, watching a glass among others on a table, the software interpreted his mind and the robot grasped the right glass! The robot was not able to “see”, of course, the eyes of the student arise on the glass. He just received the interpretation of brain waves, and therefore the order to seize the glass and not another. Next step is to understand the intention that results: the soft drink at the student to drink … as in the monkeys that case, it would be a revolution quadriplegic or severe disabilities: they could be assisted through the computer in their daily life Their thinking is translated into action by robots, or their own members


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