Hyperlayer provides a free, open source application that combines cloud computing with facial recognition and next-generation mobile devices. The system can be used for safety, geomapping, consumer research and also has many other potential applications. The acquired data can be transmitted to any device that can connect to the Internet, which gives it great potential for the future of augmented reality (AR).
One of the most popular applications for brain-computer-interfaces in in assistive health care, particularly to help people with physical and vocal disabilities. Recently, researchers at the Osaka University in Japan made a significant breakthrough by developing a brain-machine-interface (BMI) that has the capability to learn.
3D Retail Shopping Experience Coming to a Lowes Near You?
According to a report at SingularityHub, home improvement retail chain Lowe's is about to step into the future and implement "holorooms" to encourage shoppers to make more in-store purchases. The Star Trek-like technology is comprised of a 20-foot by 20-foot simulator room that combines a number of 3D technologies. If you're planning on remodeling your kitchen, but you’re not sure which way to go, you can enter the holoroom and use an iPad to select the color scheme and products from Lowe's catalogue. A model of the room will appear in the iPad app, which allows you to manipulate them and walk through a floor plan of your desired room via augmented reality.
Augmented Reality (AR)—a live view of a real-world situation with extra elements supplied by computer-generated sensory input—is a rapidly advancing field in high technology. Pete Wassell is the founder and CEO of Augmate, a B2B augmented reality enterprise that is on the cutting edge of AR.
Brain-computer-interface technology is moving along by leaps and bounds. In recent years, it has expanded beyond the labratory to fields as diverse as the medical industry and gaming. One of the most recent applications is mind-controlled aviation. Professor Florian Holzapfel and his research team at the Institute for Flight System Dynamics of the Technische Universität München (TUM), Germany, are studying how to make brain-wave controlled flight a possibility. According to the Transport Research and Innovation Panel, earlier studies showed that neuron activity can produce enough information to control electronic devices using only brain-wave signals. The EU funded project, known as “Brainflight,” uses neural signals from a pilot’s brain to allow him or her to control an aircraft while multitasking. A report in Yahoo News describes the preliminary simulations, which involved seven pilots, each wearing a cap fitted with an array of electroencephalography (EEG) electrodes designed to record neural signals from the pilot’s brain. Cables attached to the EEG transmitted the brain signals to a computer programed with a specially developed BCI algorithm. Upon receiving the transmissions, the computer converted them into control command that were conducted wirelessly. By thinking alone, the pilots were able to perform take-offs and landings, as well as maintain a fixed direction. Although project Brainflight is currently testing the functionality of BCI flight control in high fidelity flight simulators, once the team has fine-tuned the parameters, the BCI flight control program will be tested in a real UAV with the aim of applying the process to transport systems in years to come. In an interview with Livescience, Tim Frike, an aerospace engineer at TUM says that once the technology is perfected, such an intuitive mode of flying will be safer and even pilots with little flying experience could take advantage of the new technology. Image credit: A. Heddergott/TU München
PowerLoader Exoskeleton for Super Strength
If you've seen the movie Aliens, you are familiar with the exoskeleton suit that Sigourney Weaver dons to fight the predator. A team at Activelink, one of Panasonic's subsidiary companies has developed a PowerLoader exoskeleton suit reminiscent of Hollywood. According to a report from Reuters, the PowerLoader exoskeleton has been dubbed the "Ninja," and is designed to give the user extra strength. This translates as being able to life around 90 kilos (three times its own weight). Strength is added specifically to the arms and legs as the suit is designed for daily use in factories, farms and warehouses where repetitive lifting is a necessity. This suit is an advancement on Activelink's heavier predecessor, which was designed in 2009 specifically for military and disaster relief use.
First Commercial Mind-controlled Arm Approved by FDA
Prosthetics have a long history. Possibly the earliest prosthetic limb is an artificial leg, which dates back to around 300 B.C. and was discovered in Capua, Italy. The limb was cast in bronze and iron with a wooden core, and it is believed it was meant more to make the wearer feel whole, rather than for any functional use. Since then, prosthetics have certainly come a long way. These days, developers realize that amputees have a wide range of varying needs and there is no one-size-fits-all, solution to prosthetic limbs. With this in mind, today's most sophisticated artificial limbs have the ultimate in functionality due to their capability to interact directly with the brain.
Google Unveils Driverless Vehicle
Google unveiled the latest version of its driverless car last week at the Code Conference in California. According to Google's website, the unconventional vehicle has no need for any driver controls, such as a steering wheel. The company has spent a number of years equipping conventional cars with special equipment to drive themselves, but this prototype has no human controls other than emergence stop switch. Within the next year, Google aims to build a hundred of these models for further testing on the streets. Google hopes that the introduction of electric-powered, self-driving cars will increase safety and provide a more environmentally friendly mode of transport.
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have hooked up one of their flying robots, known as a quadrotor, to Google's Tango smartphone. Google's Project Tango is a 5-inch Android smartphone equipped with the Myriad 1 vision processor, which combines intelligent vision with power efficiency. The phone has a number of capabilities that can benefit the robot, such as a motion tracking camera, depth sensor, and vision processors capable of tracking its position and creating real-time 3-D maps. The device enables the robot to navigate itself autonomously.