For those who find voice control too cumbersome, a London-based startup is working on a way to control wearable devices like Google Glass with the power of thought.

The MindRDR hack — or open-source app, to use the polite term — combines wearable tech with an electroencephalography (EEG) headset. Specifically, it uses the commercially available NeuroSky MindWave Mobile device, which monitors brainwaves via a dermal patch on the forehead.

Google Glass To Come In Prescription Frames

It works like this: The EEG headset detects when the brain engages in high levels of focused concentration. Think hard enough, and you can trigger the MindRDR to send a particular instruction to Google Glass — take a picture, say.

In this case, you would focus on the image you want until a white line starts to rise on the Google Glass “screen.” When the line reaches the top, Glass snaps a picture. Repeat the process to automatically post the image online. (You can pre-configure the system to work with whatever social media profile you prefer.)

“It’s pretty cool when you’ve taken a picture and shared it, just by thinking,” says Chloe Kirton, creative director of startup This Place, in the company’s demo video.

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As of now, the MindRDR (pronounced “mind reader”) is limited to triggering the Google Glass camera, but the company is working toward more varied applications. The technology could be used to help those with severe physical disabilities — such as locked-in syndrome — interact with the world via wearables. See the video.

One more interesting note: Click through the online materials and you’ll notice the designers often refer to MindRDR process as “telekinesis,” conjuring up notions of ghostbusters, psychics and comic book superheroes. But technically speaking, you can make the case for it: MindRDR and similar technologies actually do use brainwaves alone to manipulate materials in the outside world.

Now there’s a thought.


Credit: This Place