Patients with neurodegenerative diseases may be afforded more independence from a wearable display to monitor brainwaves through Royal Philips and Accenture.
A neurodegenerative disease affects a person's ability to control his or her movements. For example, amytrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, may leave one side of a person's body paralyzed, but his or her cognitive ability remains intact.
The software could potentially allow users to take their thoughts and transform their brainwaves into real-life actions. When paired with the Emotiv Insight, it could be connected with smart devices that allow people to maintain their autonomy. It can even be paired with their mobile divice.
"Instead of going from voice command to control an application, you can actually go beyond that and just use a brain sensor," said Tony Jones, vice president and CMO of Philips Healthcare Patient Care and Monitoring Solutions. "So, literally, a person can think about what they want to do, and trigger a command that then gets executed all the way to the lights in their house."
The amount of control a user can exercise is dependent on the resolution of the brain activity recordings.
People would use their thoughts to send brain commands through the headset sensor. Then they would be processed using the Accenture and Philips digital application which would control the Philips Smart products that the user can control. The user can fine-tune the visual aspects of the display through thinking commands such as "down" or "right".
"This proof of concept shows the potential of wearable technology in a powerful new way - helping people with serious diseases and mobility issues take back some control of their lives through digital innovation," said Paul Daugherty, chief technology officer of Accenture. "It is another demonstration of how Accenture and Philips, collaborating with other technology innovators, seek to improve the lives of people with healthcare challenges."
The design of the headset is similar to Google Glass, which is also in works to pilot various procedures similar to Accenture's.
Although the technology is still growing, several companies are in the process of testing out these products to put into the marketplace and to create better healthcare.