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New Brain Implant Turns Visualized Letters into Text

The brain-to-text technology converts thoughts to text, allowing people paralyzed from the neck down to communicate.

A recent CNet article discussed a new technology that can convert thoughts into text as quickly as typing on a smartphone. The concept combines machine learning with a brain-computer interface (BCI) to read handwriting that is visualized rather than written on paper. In other words, a person can imagine writing letters, and the text will display on a screen with the help of two implanted electrode arrays that record the brain activity. The thought information is gathered and processed in real time by a computer that converts it into words on a screen.

The goal is to help people who are paralyzed to communicate more efficiently without the use of their hands. The system has only been tested on one subject so far, a 65-year-old man paralyzed from the neck down. Next, the team hopes to work with someone who is unable to speak or suffers from a degenerative neurological disorder.

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