Engineers at Johns Hopkins University have created a set of robotic legs that can be controlled using brain signals alone. The robotic legs are controlled through an electronic cap worn by the user, so the technology is non-invasive.
So far, the robotic legs and electronic cap are able to recognize when a person wants to walk or stop with 95% accuracy. All the user has to do is imagine walking or stopping and the legs behave accordingly. Using EEG signals, paralyzed people throughout the entire world will one day be able to go about their day with just the effort of a thought.
This is an exciting development in brain technology, but it’s not the only of its kind. Researchers have also made advancements using EEG signals to control a computer cursor and drive a wheelchair. These advancements have the potential to dramatically change the lives of millions of people for the better, from increasing a person’s ability to interact with the world to literally moving around in it. As this technology spreads we will begin to see the true impact it can have on humanity.
The robotic legs still need to have speed and direction factored into their movement, but these are a few giant steps in the right direction. This breakthough is only the beginning and the end is still not in sight.