Sleek Headband Reads Your Mind
Muse is a new mind-reading headband that connects wirelessly to nearby tablets and smartphones. It's still under development and has few applications yet.
CREDIT: MUSE on Indiegogo
The latest mind-reading headband might be the best-looking yet. For now, however, there aren't many applications to go with it. Interested customers can order a headband, but it won't be ready for shipping for another six months.
InteraXon, a startup based in California, is just finishing its crowd-funding campaign to manufacture its Muse neuro-headgear, for which it has a prototype. There's less than a day left to contribute to the campaign on Indiegogo. Those who give $165 or more will get a Muse in June 2013, according to the campaign page. InteraXon has already raised about $277,000, far more than its $150,000 goal.
Muse devices detect the electrical activity that the brain gives off and can distinguish between beta waves, which occur when people concentrate, and alpha waves, which occur when people relax, InteraXon says. The headband then wirelessy sends that data to nearby tablets and smartphones using a Bluetooth connection. It comes with a brain games app that the company says will help users improve focus and relaxation. InteraXon doesn't say whether or when it plans to create more related apps.
The company does encourage others to make games for the headband. The Indiegogo page offers a developer's version of the Muse.
InteraXon isn't the first commercial headgear to detect electrical activity in the brain. Hong Kong-based Emotiv makes a headset that allows wearers to control a few computer games with their mind. Neurosky, a Japanese company, makes mind-controlled cat ears.
InteraXon's Muse is sleeker than its predecessors, however, consisting of a single smooth band that encircles the forehead and hooks behind the ears like glasses — perhaps a sign that the field is beginning to mature.