The participants in the experiment successfully played tetris while communicating “telepathically.”
A joint team of scientists from Washington University and Carnegie Mellon University from the United States published a draft article about a successful experiment.
According to scientists, BrainNet is the first non-invasive brain-brain interface with more than two people involved. Electroencephalography (EEG) is used to read signals from the brain, which allows you to record patterns of neuronal activity in the brain. Data is “loaded” with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), which excites neurons with magnetic fields.
In the experiment, three volunteers were asked to play a tetris-like game. The participant was required to decide whether to turn the piece 180 ° or not. “Recipient” could not see the game completely, but could control and make decisions based on flashes of light transmitted to the brain.
Two other players saw the screen and the figures, so they could decide which action was worth doing. After they had made their choice, they should have looked at one of the light bulbs flickering at different frequencies. Observation of flicker caused fluctuations in the visual cortex, which were subsequently transmitted to the third participant.
Previously, other researchers managed to connect the brains of rats and monkeys so that one could transfer commands to the motor cortex to the other. This technique requires the connection of a large number of electrodes directly to the brain; for a person, this procedure can be dangerous. Non-invasive methods using EEG and TMS give a “noisy” picture. However, despite this, the researchers managed to achieve 81.25% accuracy among the five test groups.
This result opens up possibilities for future brain-brain interfaces that will enable people to collectively solve tasks using the social network of connected brains.