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A researcher duo from University of Washington may well be on their way to achieve the closest possible thing to telepathy today. The recent efforts by Rajesh Rao and Andrea Stocco together with the collaboration between the UW Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences, Computer Science & Engineering and the Department of Psychology, have led them to develop a system that lets a person’s brain to control another person’s hand motions while sitting in a remote location via transmissions sent over the Internet. Last year in August, we covered these sparkling results where the duo demonstrated their technology by playing a game.

They used an electroencephalography (EEG) machine to read Rao's brain, while he was looking at a computer screen to play a rather simple video game, where he had to fire a cannon at a flying bird using just his mind and no hand movements. All he had to do was imagine moving his finger to hit the fire button (only imagine, not move). In a different lab, Stocco was sitting wearing a purple swim cap with a transcranial magnetic stimulation coil that was placed over his left motor cortex, which controls hand movement. Their results showed that whenever Rao imagined hitting the 'fire' button, Stocco would almost instantaneously move his right index finger to fire the cannon.

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