A government program is describing as “attainable” the goal of developing technology that can read information from the human brain, or write information there, without any invasive hardware, reports Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
In recent years, increasingly sophisticated ways have been developed to enable a person’s brain to communicate with a device. Such access to computers and the Web has helped people with brain injuries.
But those processes always employed “invasive techniques” and are “not appropriate for able-bodied people,” according to a new report from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA.
The agency is launching the Next-Generation Nonsurgical Neurotechnology programs to move past the limited-scope, noninvasive neurotechnologies that already exist, such as the electroencephalogram and transcranial direct current stimulation
Those technologies are too imprecise, experts say.
Al Emondi of the federal agency’s Biological Technologies Office explained the next steps.
“DARPA created N3 to pursue a path to a safe, portable neural interface system capable of reading from and writing to multiple points in the brain at once. High-resolution, nonsurgical neurotechnology has been elusive, but thanks to recent advances in biomedical engineering, neuroscience, synthetic biology, and nanotechnology, we now believe the goal is attainable,” he said.
The biggest anticipated problem is having signals scattered as they pass through skin, skull and brain tissue, the agency explained.
“We’re asking multidisciplinary teams of researchers to construct approaches that enable precise interaction with very small areas of the brain, without sacrificing signal resolution or introducing unacceptable latency into the N3 system,” Emondi said.