Guiding idea: EEG instead of levers and buttons

Who is behind the walls of the laboratory experiments — tomorrow the real development that is used in practice. So it was, is and always will be, as specifically based on this principle, the progress of our civilization. One of the consequences of such sequences are "fantasy" on the practical implementation of those things and technologies, which is still far away, even before the release of the boundaries of scientific institutions. In recent years the pass work to create systems that will allow a person to manage any technique only with your own thoughts. While these works far to widespread, but bold guesses about their fate already expressed.

The leading idea: EEG instead of levers and buttons

By the end of the last century, scientists from the Institute of Duke (North Carolina, USA) under the control of Dr. M. Nicolelis for the first time in the world which is "connected" to a living being to a computer. The experience took place, followed by: the brain of laboratory rats implanted 48 electrodes that through a special device connected to a computer. Next rat did not just give water, and in order to get a drink, the animal had to press the button. Scientists have recorded the painstaking way electronic pulses of rat brain, accompanied pressed. When the animal is accustomed to "work" with a button to turn it off. For the issue of water is now posted computer. When the activity of the rat brain coincided with the one observed in the presses, automatic water bowl filled. Over time, the rat realized that pushing the button is not necessary — you can just loaf about it. Critter approached the water bottle and with the help of suitable thoughts activated water supply. Experience tatty and, at first glance, uninteresting, but the first step in connecting the brain and the computer was manufactured.

After the rats took up the monkeys. These animals are larger, more developed in terms of the mind, so we had to use more electrodes — 128 pieces. The smallness changed the course of the experience, even though the essence remains the same. Now monkeys had With a joystick to move the cursor on the display. When he got to the picturesque spot, animal received a treat. Guinea monkeys quickly learned to use the joystick, but the scientists to create a signature signals handy little more time. When she was ready, joystick in monkeys was taken away. She became golodovat? Well, not so: it is, like the rat, quickly realized that the "mediator" in the form of her legs is not necessary and the cursor can be moved only with the help of thoughts. 2nd experience with monkeys was slightly more difficult. By removing the brain signals the system attached manipulator arm. As an incentive for experimental animals used in the past as well as pieces of fruit. All monkeys who participated in the experiment took only a couple of days to learn how to take advantage of the mechanical hand. Animal brain was able to adjust to the conditions of the experiment and compare their own impulses that control the movements with the movements of the manipulator.

In the course of experiments with mechanical arms was revealed a fascinating fact: the first signals appropriate to any acts appearing on the electrodes 10 in a few seconds earlier than brain gave the command to carry them out. In addition, scientists experimenting with inverted motion of the manipulator: monkeys wanted to move the arm, for example, on the right, and he went to the left. Conducted and more than sophisticated experiments — the team of the brain to "lift arm" is now consistent with "shift to the left", etc. And in all similar configurations animal's brain for a little time to adjust the time and began to issue command pulses, appropriate modern setting.

The year 1998 was marked by the first similar experiments on humans. This year, the Institute of Emory (Atlanta, as the United States) in the brain is hard ailing and paralyzed Johnny Ray implanted microelectrodes. After a short-lived school Ray was able to control the cursor on the screen and even typing. The experiment was considered successful, but the use of implantable contact felt awkward. Instead of electrodes, "embedded" in the brain, everywhere will continue to be used EEG, to eliminate the electronic signals from the scalp.

Soon after the experiments at the Institute Emery appeared first standards at the level of thought-managed transport. Of humanistic reasoning they became regular motorized wheelchair. Laudatory endeavor. However, you need to see to the proper determination of the degree of mental signals in only 90% reached in 2009. But even a relatively low degree of determination encouraged scientists and engineers for new achievements, and futurists — the adjustment of their own picture of the world of the future.

Now it is necessary to make a small digression. All of those same judgments of humanism in recent years have received a huge spread of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and specifically those of them management which comes with a remote control panel (RPV). Yes, the mention of humanism in this context, looks, at least, debatable: control UAVs people are not endangered, but if drone strike on his own … he must destroy the essence of people and technology. Goes a typical phenomenon of humanism. On the one hand pilot-operator, on the other — the people of the target. But at the moment we are talking not about the moral side of things. In most cases, the controls are similar to the devices drones conventional aircraft: aircraft control stick, the handle (handle) management engine (engines), and a series of buttons, levers and other "stuff" in charge of the different systems of the machine. Since the 80s of the last century, all the great popularity of the concept HOTAS (Hands On Throttle and Stick — Hands on the arms control aircraft and engine), which implies control of the airplane without removing hands from the main bodies. This greatly simplifies and speeds up the pilot, but sometimes even this time advantage is not enough. In the case of the drones situation may be even more terrible: a pilot in the cockpit of a conventional aircraft can just turn your head and rotating the camera to control the UAV requires a separate knob or button unit. Accordingly, the efficiency falls HOTAS. The main method of solving this difficulty lies in the reduction of the reaction time. But management using conventional devices can not cope with this decrease.

The leading idea: EEG instead of levers and buttons

But now it's time to go back to the experiments with monkeys and humans. The introduction of management systems electroencephalographic with suitable equipment that takes the team to the "language" of electronic pulses to the brain in clear view of the drone, could greatly facilitate the work of the operators. There is already a system for the "mental" control for wheelchairs and even cars. British neuroscientist R. Flower says to practical development of this control on aircra
ft do not have much time.

Before remotely piloted aircraft in such a case, simply open up great opportunities. But still, as always, depends upon the development of technology. As already mentioned, even such comparable ordinary ts, as wheelchairs, while still quite difficult to determine the momentum of the existing systems of the brain. The modern record in this area is within the boundaries of 95-96% correct recognition. But drone apparatus has a lot more flight characteristics that need to constantly track down and correct. Perhaps even 99% recognitions will not be much for such technology — it needs all 100. Ground combat vehicles slightly easier to manage (at least as they are moving exclusively in one plane), and for their respective systems yet.

Control systems for vehicles based on the direct assistance of the brain and the equipment now, let's be honest, is still very raw for installation on the aircraft, and even more for the adoption. Candidate they can be absolutely automatic computers. The United States has conducted tests of similar systems — in every sense of unmanned aerial vehicles words without the help of others, and are storming the goal. In this area already have some success, but this is not the UAV will enter into operation. The fact that the man is not yet ready to hand over my computer most crucial part of the battle — the decision to attack. How long will the automatic fine-tuning "brains" for the drones, while it is difficult to read. Yet, it is useful not a year or two. In this case, the system of "management thinking" time enough for their own development. And who at the moment can say who will be more trust in the military of the future: people-carriers with electrode caps on their heads or completely autonomous machines?

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