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Conscious Brain-to-Brain Communications Promises Brain-to-Brain Telepresence

September 2, 2014 | Telepresence Options


On the left, the BCI subsystem is shown schematically, including electrodes over the motor cortex and the EEG amplifier/transmitter wireless box in the cap. Motor imagery of the feet codes the bit value 0, of the hands codes bit value 1. On the right, the CBI system is illustrated, highlighting the role of coil orientation for encoding the two bit values. Communication between the BCI and CBI components is mediated by the internet.

Story and images by PLOS

Brain-wave sensors have been used to 'telepathically' control everything from remote-controlled helicopters to computer-generated avatars.

Now scientists from the University of Barcelona in Spain, Axilum Robotics in France, Harvard Medical School and Starlab Barcelona have advanced the technology to enable someone in India to send the equivalent of a "telepathic" email to his colleague in France using nothing but the power of his mind.

The researchers used electroencephalography (EEG) headsets to record electrical activity from neurons firing in the brain of the Indian "transmitter" subject and convert the words: "hola" and "ciao" into binary.

In EEG, electrical currents in the brain are linked with different thoughts that are then fed into a computer interface. The computer analyses signals and controls a specific action.


In the researchers' latest study, published in Plos One, researchers decided to interface with another brain to receive the signal.

In the initial test, the greeting was sent from a volunteer in Thiruvananthapuram, India to another volunteer "receiver" subject in Strasbourg, France.

There, a computer translated the message and then used electrical stimulation to deliver the message to the receiver's mind.

The "message" appeared as flashes of light in the corner of their vision.


Just another step towards direct brain-to-brain telepresence communications where messages are instantaneous and capable of triggering the proper neuro-transmitters to create photo-realistic inter-personal communications.

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