Mind Controlled TV


Finally, a good use for those EEG headsets. [Andrew] has set up a system that will turn his TV on and off if he focuses hard enough. He’s got the software set to trigger an IR LED when the “strength” gets high enough.  When the action starts, around 4:30 in the video, you can see that when he raises his arm the meter on the screen begins to raise and the TV turns on. Though not immediately useful, we can’t help but get a little excited seeing him literally turn his TV on with a thought.

31 thoughts on “Mind Controlled TV

  1. 1) My blog has been linked on Adafruit, Slashdot and a bunch of other places and the FIRST ignorant comment comes from a HAD user. Grats!

    2) I hear bashing Arduino is cool.

    3) My name isn’t Andrew.

    4) The first 3 sec. of the video state that I’m in my basement lounge next to my workshop. How did you EVER deduce that I was in the basement? I’d ask for a link to your projects, but you’re clearly spending all of your time trolling HAD.


  2. > 2) I hear bashing Arduino is cool.
    You heard right!

    > 4) The first 3 sec. of the video state that I’m in my basement lounge next to my workshop.
    Don’t have time to watch the vid, i spend all of my time trolling HAD!

  3. This is very applicable:

    you could have it change the channel according to how interested you are…

    you could skip ads and play normally when you see the show you want to see in your PVR’ed TV episodes.

    useful to determine ratings?

    there are more, I’m sure!

  4. yeah, lame comments suck.

    HaD so needs to have moderation.
    maybe something like “rate this comment” feature

    just my $0.02 worth

    btw does anyone know where i can get the mindflex or OCZ headsets cheaply?

  5. @paul-the problem is that this technology collects none of that information. At the moment it is just a novelty. Until the underlying science progresses the kinds of applications you mention aren’t possible, but it will be really cool in the future.

  6. @Nemo,

    I realize that, but as you say “in the future”…

    The technology has been brewing for only a relatively short while, but already we can see it being used in homebrew projects, pretty nifty!

  7. The “Reason” for a given thing being Hacked often simply is because WE CAN. Then, we have a set of Hacking projects that are more dramatic for what they are doing that few others even come close to.

    Do take under consideration what Paul has done with EEG tech as turning a “Gaming Toy” into something more useful. A little further improvement might end up giving many people a “Chance to Communicate” that they might not EVER have a chance for any other way. This EEG Hacking project is potentially going to give hope to many folks trapped in their minds, unable to get a thought in or out of their skulls!

    Take a moment envision finding *YOU* are instantly in that reality- your brain has lost all Sensorium and ALL control of your body. We’re not talking about a mythical “someone else” either. The grim reality is- more than a few of you reading this are only a millisecond’s Spinal Damage etc away from being trapped in your own skull.

    Having Cheap, Functional Off-The-Shelf tech to make life for folks needing EEG as communication is a step closer to reality thanks to Paul’s work.

  8. i used to be able to do that. no modification to the tv. but then i took the drugs issued to me by THE MAN, and my powers of technopathy are fuckin gone. any ideas on how to hack my brain back into that state, other than the original neuro-hack that i did in Nov. 2006?

  9. I don’t see why you would be so upset about lupins remark. It’s easier to let things slide when they don’t bother you ;o

    Although the misspelling of your name on HaD is a little embarrassing :\

  10. This technology interests me quite a bit, but I just can’t seem to think of many good applications for it in this state.

    It is really limited to just toggling something on and off, and even then, doing so requires considerable concentration (as seen in the video). Of course, this is very early consumer hardware, later revisions should have considerably better resolution.

    But it seems a lot of people are expecting a whole lot more from this technology then we are likely to see in the near future. We are a long way off from actually being able to “see” what a person is thinking.

  11. I seem to have been too subtle.

    The history of Technology tends to favor whole “Basic Technologies” that were born entire in a private,home lab- or taken from impractical barely functional crudities into things that WORKED.

    EEG is one of those technologies that’s been always a bit shy of all it could be. I’d gently suggest that it’s more likely to have our next major leap in EEG Application Tech come from a shop like Paul’s than from Big Pharma etc.

    So- independently working to confirm or refute what these headsets can and cannot be Hacked into doing is a chance to show our collective impact on Humanity. Hacking’s not always limited to shiny Steampunk artsy stuff. Sometimes, there’s a chance for Hackerdom to change our world for the better. Are we going to be a good example by peer replicating worthy Hacks, or is heckling everything that can be slagged the preferred ethic?

  12. RE: Error rate.

    Signal processing and “Training the Human” both have truly daunting learning curves. I wonder if the “Goog 411” method of collecting a huge sampling base to data mine would work. Deploying cheapie headsets to every user of “DeviceX” might help produce “Less Inaccuracy” from low cost EEG systems. If you think speaker independent Voice IVR is a non-trivial technology, EEG from Scratch will really test our collective UberHacker chops.

  13. I hate to see what would happen to a TV when I were to connect my mind to it, and see those annoying commercials or awful shows or complete lies and BS on the news, I fear I might cause a global blackout :o

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