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Gamers to control characters with their brains

Headset will translate thoughts and emotions

A headset that allows gamers to control their play with just their thoughts will go on sale later this year.

The neuro headset, which has been launched by Emotiv, picks up electrical impulses from the nerve cells in the brain. Non-invasive electroencephalography (EEG) technology is then used to read the impulses and send signals wirelessly to a computer.

In an interview with the BBC, Emotiv's president, Tan Le, said: "Emotiv is a neuro-engineering company and we've created a brain computer interface that reads electrical impulses in the brain and translates them into commands that a video game can accept and control the game dynamically."

"It allows the user to manipulate a game or virtual environment naturally and intuitively," she added.

According to Emotiv, while headsets that read neural activity are not new, this is the first of its kind that can be used by a consumer rather than a technician and it doesn’t feature lots of electrodes or need a gel applied to the scalp.

The headset will detect and mimic more than 30 different facial expressions and recreate emotions felt in real life on the character in the game.

"If you laughed or felt happy after killing a character in a game then your virtual buddy could admonish you for being callous," Tan Le explained.

Priced at $299 (£150) the headset comes with a gyroscope to detect movement and a USB dongle which can be plugged into a PC to allow wireless connection.


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