The Thinking Man's Wheelchair

Audeo allows the control of a wheelchair by neurological signals. Put more simply, you can move the chair if you think you can.

The Audeo system uses a neckband with sensors to capture signals sent to the vocal chords by the brain to initiate speech. (Speech production is not necessary to move the wheelchair). These neurological signals are processed by a TI CompactRIO computer, which compares them to the signals associated with pre-recorded words determined during training exercises.

The computer then issues appropriate commands to the motorized wheelchair.

The following informative video demonstrates that the device works perfectly.


(Ambient Audeo Mind-Powered Wheelchair video)

This is a truly remarkable achievement. The first time I ever heard of this idea was in The Menagerie, first broadcast in November of 1966. Captain Christopher Pike is confined to a wheelchair that is operated by brainwaves alone.


(Christoper Pike's Star Trek thought-controlled wheelchair)

Note that this is not a case of a superhuman character who uses telekinesis to move the chair. Pike is an ordinary man who uses an extraordinary technology.

Which now exists, thanks to a lot of hard work by engineers at Ambient Corporation and the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.

For additional amazement, take a look at these previous articles:

Via Thinking of words can guide your wheelchair.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/7/2007)

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