Facebook's New AR Wrist-Interface Literally Reads Your Mind

Facebook's New AR Wrist-Interface Literally Reads Your Mind

Facebook Reality Labs have unveiled a video presentation featuring a prototype wrist-mounted interface for high-fidelity hand tracking & advanced haptics.

The device will sense electrical signals in your arm to detect intentional inputs from your brain. That's right, it's literally going to read your mind.

"How do we build a computing platform that is truly human-centric?"

It's been a busy news week over here in the world of VR (Virtual Reality). From Xbox VR rumours (which got shot down fast) to a PSVR2 controller reveal that blew literally everyone's mind, we've certainly gone over our quota of unexpected announcements.

Well, there's one more insane news announcement to cover before we welcome in the weekend. Facebook Reality Labs, Facebook's AR/VR research department, have announced that they're working full-steam-ahead on their first AR product.

And if you didn't notice, development has gotten weird.

The wrist-mounted device, still in an early research prototype phase, is attempting to make AR input as seamless as it can be. The device detects electrical signals in your arm, attempting to detect intentional inputs from your brain.

The demo video shows the potential for a button-less button input, but the developers fantasise about extremely accurate keyboard-less typing and much more.

However, given that this project has the term 'Facebook' associated with it, one word is on everyone's lips: privacy. Facebook Neuromotor Interfaces Director Thomas Reardon discussed the issue with UploadVR:

“Neural data like this is really quite personal and we treat this issue as part of our research set. The problem of how to deal with information that is this personal and engage in a way that is pro-human and on behalf of users. I will tell you that we are deeply committed to transparency as scientists, to engaging in the world of publishing and the world of public engagement, so that we can explain to people why we use this data, how we use it, and what kinds of user experiences are actually enabled by it.”

This is perhaps the most exciting prototype demo I've seen so far this year, and the applications are endless. But given that I have the Half-Life: Alyx full-length Bioshock campaign mod fresh in my mind, my brain is going straight to 'Plasmids'.


Liam Noble Shearer

I am a VR reporter and commentator based in the far North of Scotland. I focus primarily on industry news & new releases, as well as writing editorials and reviews. Likes coffee, dislikes parsnips.

Scotland http://www.liamnshearer.com Liam Noble Shearer

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