BrainDriver - If You Can Think It, You Can Drive It

By Meera Dolasia on August 21, 2011

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If you were impressed by Google Inc.'s autonomous computer-controlled cars, you will be stunned by the BrainDriver - A car that can be controlled with your mind!

The genius behind this smart car is a team of computer scientists led by Paul Rojas who heads the Artificial Intelligence Group at Germany's Freie Universitat Berlin. To build the prototype, that they dubbed MadeInGermany, the group started by using commercially available devices to detect and record the electroencephalograms (EEG) or the brain's electrical activity associated with four basic car control commands - left, right, accelerate and brake.

They then programmed a computer controlled autonomous car with the patterns so that it would recognize them and know how to react. Next, they purchased an 'Emotive neuroheadset' developed for video games by San Francisco based Emotive that is designed to 'read' the player's thoughts and connected it to the autonomous car that had been programmed to react to the driver's thoughts.

However, while the car was ready, the driver was not. He still had to be trained so that he could think of the right commands at the appropriate times. Then, it was time to test the mind-controlled vehicle!

While the drive along the straight stretch of road was controlled by the car's computer when it came to turns, stopping or speeding up, the computer read the driver's commands conveyed via the Emotive neuroheadset fitted on his head. The experiment, as you can see from the video below, was quite successful. With just a slight delay in reaction, the car seemed to do exactly what its driver was thinking it to do.

This kind of futuristic car is of course nowhere close to coming to a car dealer near you, but the scientists believe that these thought driven commands have a lot of advantages even within today's normal cars, especially when it comes to preventing accidents.

That's because tests have shown that the human brain thinks about stopping long before the body reacts - meaning, that if we can develop cars that can stop based on our thoughts, the roads could become a lot safer - Pretty awesome!

Resources: news.discovery.com, autonomos.inf.fu-berlin.de

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246 Comments
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  • Owen Libby Wednesday, November 16, 2016 at 4:18 pm
    I think this is awesome but if you think of crashing into a store then that will cause a little problem!😬😬😬
    • Jungkook Friday, May 20, 2016 at 11:32 am
      In the beginning its awesome for the people that kind of learning how to drive In the middle it can controlled people mind . Also I can go what your facing In the end the Robot is controlled you body and brain
      • Jeff Friday, May 20, 2016 at 11:28 am
        The bad thing to do is never think about run over the police and the people it is baaaaaaaaaaad to do?
        • Jungkook Friday, May 20, 2016 at 11:28 am
          I think that the people that don't know how to drive they can use these type of cars
          • endo567
            endo567Friday, May 20, 2016 at 11:27 am
            I don't think you should trust theses cars. They could do anything you think of. Like if you think to run over a dog it will. Or if you think of running over a nice old lady. You'll go to any place you think of. Like if you want to go to the park but then think of your mother in Paris it will change course.
            • gg975420
              gg975420Friday, May 20, 2016 at 11:26 am
              Even though this seems fun, it can be really dangerous. One reason why it can be dangerous is because you can crash. For example, you can think "What if we crash" and you will crash. Another example, you can think about people who crashed and think "What if that was me" you would crash. In conclusion these cars must not exist.
              • gg975420
                gg975420Friday, May 20, 2016 at 11:29 am
                And what if we are talking on the phone?
              • guyFriday, May 6, 2016 at 10:09 am
                Cooooooll!!!!!!!!!!!!
                • niceherobrine01
                  niceherobrine01Wednesday, April 27, 2016 at 4:58 am
                  It can be very dangerous if you think about speeding.
                  • lion4245Monday, April 18, 2016 at 4:19 pm
                    this is a awesome idea, maybe when i grow up i might get it
                    • wolf2796
                      wolf2796Friday, March 18, 2016 at 9:47 am
                      What if your brain suddenly gets sidetracked and the car drives you somewhere else?

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