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Full-Dive Technology, Brainstorming


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#1 terror2012

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 02:56 PM

Hello there. I'm new here. I'm searching for information about thing like nervegear. I'm interested in this technology, because my hobby is developing games/software and I started a project about a game, which would "simulate" real world but with mmorpg features (mobs, quests and things like that), more like Log Horizon (also I was interested in AL system which would make NPC act not like computer, but more like players). So, feel free to reply with any ideas you have for that kind of technology which would allow to dive in-game (even if it's not full-dive, your ideeas might help making this things real).

 

Have a nice day, 

terror



#2 NotBrad

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 10:46 AM

Dude, hate to burst your bubble, but even the most advanced cutting edge of this field is still several years away from dynamic brain-state derived limb positioning, and even further away from any form of precise neural cognitive manipulation, regardless of whether that be in the form of an FD environment. The odds that any individual catching up to said progress as a hobby is beyond preposterous. The technology and equipment necessary just to run the most basic and rudimentary experiments in this field costs a small fortune, and the dangers associated with neural manipulation make it a very difficult concept to advocate due to the potential back-blast from a situation like that in the second half of the first season of SAO. Of course once the technology becomes available in an SDK, you could potentially pull something out that changes, or moreover defines the industry, but that is many years ahead.


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#3 pgrmdave

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 11:17 AM

What NotBrad said, but we're not years away - we're probably decades away. The people who will be working on something like this that's releasable to the public are likely either infants right now or aren't born yet. The best that individuals can do right now is to get degrees in medical science, electrical/software engineering, biotechnology, etc. in order to help chip away a small part of the problem now.

#4 TheNerveGearProject

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 07:30 PM

"Dude, hate to burst your bubble, but even the most advanced cutting edge of this field is still several years away from dynamic brain-state derived limb positioning,..."

 

Interesting enough is that dynamic derived limb positioning have already been achieve with prosthetic arms. It's no that precise yet, but this is because of mecanical issue. Even if right now it is done through output given from muscle contraction, those signal need to be sent from somewhere (most likely the brain).

 

@NotBrad here is some links to what i mean maybe you will understand my point of view. Maybe this is intrusive, but who know what the future reserve?

 

Prosthetic limb used to restore 'near-natural' sense of touch, claims DARPA | The Verge

http://www.cnn.com/2...d-senses-touch/


Edited by TheNerveGearProject, 29 October 2015 - 09:52 AM.


#5 NotBrad

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Posted 28 October 2015 - 10:19 AM

Interesting enough is that dynamic derived limb positioning have already been achieve with prosthetic arms. It's no that precise yet, but this is because of mecanical issue. Even if right now it is done through output given from muscle contraction, those signal need to be sent from somewhere (most likely the brain).

I think that you should consider the following, the whole concept of the NerveGear is a non-intrusive wireless system that does not require any surgery to use. The systems you reference are completely contrary to the base philosophy of the NG. That uses an entirely different type of science than the NG and any progress made in that regard can only be used as a means of understanding and neutralizing output from the brain to prevent non-intentional motor function during use. Although this is certainly a critical part of the system as a whole commercial product, it would not be anywhere near the top of the priority list until way after the development of the system that controls input to the brain.

 

To put it plainly, you should pay attention to what people actually say, rather than what you think they say. Always make a point of re-reading somebody else's comments or ideas before you criticize them or make a suggestion, there are many times that you might overlook something within their writing that explains their position or describes their point of view. Without the understanding of what the writer's perspective is, you can't make a real counter-argument. Sure you are right, prosthetics have made huge progress in therms of their bionic function and precision, but many of those are intrusive, and those that are not are quite crude compared to what will be required to produce a product like the emu-sphere or the NerveGear.


Edited by NotBrad, 28 October 2015 - 10:26 AM.


#6 CraigD

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Posted 29 October 2015 - 06:38 AM

What NotBrad said, but we're not years away - we're probably decades away. The people who will be working on something like this that's releasable to the public are likely either infants right now or aren't born yet. The best that individuals can do right now is to get degrees in medical science, electrical/software engineering, biotechnology, etc. in order to help chip away a small part of the problem now.

I agree.

A hazard with SF like Sword Art Online is that, in depicting a nonexistent family of devices – the NerveGear and AmuSphere - as looking like present day consumer electronics, it gloms on to our real world experience of consumer electronics, in which, for the past 30+ years, increasingly amazing devices have become available at decreasing prices. But, as described in the fiction and fan works as using microwave frequency radiation to read and write to the brain, these devices are certainly impossible. Considering the possibility to realizing a device that retains the key feature of the NerveGear – as NotBrad I think well-described it

… the whole concept of the NerveGear is a non-intrusive wireless system that does not require any surgery to use.

- it’s still uncertain if any such device is physically possible.

The key problem, which we’ve explored at length in this subforum, is that truly non-intrusive brain/brain nerve activity imaging devices are low (on the order of tens of thousands of times the size of neurons) resolution, non-intrusive brain nerve “writing” devices even lower. These limitations are not due to lack or refinement of their technology, but to fundamental physics.

As best I can tell, the only approaches that hold promise of being able to read and write to the brain in the way depicted in SAO are ones requiring physical intrusion – electrodes – in the brain.

Because miniaturization – the usual buzzword is “nanotechnology” – holds promise for making such intrusions practically painless, invisible, and fast – I don’t think this is as serious a departure from the dream of a “no-intrusive wireless system” Kawahara and his fans imagine. Despite being about 30 years old, nanotechnology is still in its infancy, so to Dave’s list of recommended education paths/careers, I’d add it.
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#7 BlueBlue

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Posted 29 October 2015 - 03:34 PM

So, I'm new to this forum, and I have been looking through most of the posts being made. It's really cool that this much people are working together to try and make this. But, here's some things I would like to ask so I can better understand this.

 

First, from my understanding, we have to find a way to monitor the brain's functions. And from what some people have said, each person's brain is different. So using wires, or nano technology, the wires would have to identify what the a certain neuron's job would be. So, is there any way of identifying what a certain neuron would do? Because according to what people have said, wouldn't each map of the nervous system be different? If that was true, we would have to identify which each neuron does with precision. 

 

Second, we need a way of controlling the signals sent by the nervous system. First, we would need to make certain things in the game that can be detected by artificial senses (like smell, sight, all that) and these senses would trigger signals to be sent through your brain. But while doing this, we would need to block signals from being sent from your real-life senses. Also, we would need to have our brain send signals to our virtual bodies without having the brain send signals to your real body. So, do we have the technology to process the thousands of signals being sent at once?

 

And finally, to test all of these we would need the proper resources. Some of these resources will be hard to come by. We would need medical supplies, parts to build the nerve gear, and the hardest thing to obtain would be a human test subject. If we accidentally triggered something that could potentially harm the target, not many people would be willing to volunteer. You would need to test each neuron to see what it does, and if you did that you could harm the subject.

 

Well, that's all, and good luck on creating this!


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#8 NotBrad

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Posted 30 October 2015 - 08:52 AM

Hello BlueBlue, welcome to the forums, I would like to provide some insight into my current understanding of the brain. Although you are correct in that all humans will have different layouts at the neuron level, the brain is still quite similar between individuals. The brain, as far as I know at least, has localized sets of neurons that perform certain functions, these "sections" of the brain are similar both in size and location between individuals(and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong guys). But like I have said many times before, the problem with this technology lies not with the actual means of application or the concept itself, but in the calibration of said systems to function as an extension of the user. I read an article a few weeks back about how the Massachusetts Institute of Technology(MIT) had successfully designed a system of very small "tubes" that could be inserted into the brain to deliver medicine, but they also said it could house wires instead. Assuming that this technology is past the concept stage and will or has already entered trials, we may see this technology emerge sooner than we thought. But the body is an incredible machine, and is capable of adapting to things like bionic limbs. These bionic limbs are not a "plug and play" system like what is seen in Sword Art Online, but it certainly is a proof of concept. I imagine that when this technology becomes a reality, there will be a lot of work that has to go into learning how to use the device. because lets face it, unless it is a system that works like a limb that is learned by the user, there will always be the potential for hacking into said device to harm the user.

 

To be specific, if the calibration and interface relies on the user retraining their brain to work with the system, there are no security risks any more, because the processing of the information into a message the brain can understand is done by the brain the user is protected by the very thing that makes the system so hard to use.

 

Edit:

After reading your comment CraigD, I think that the device concept is physically possible, but the sheer size of said device would be closer to this

 moranis2-dark-helmet-spaceballs_xawesome

Than this

hqdefault.jpg

Plus the radiation required to constantly manipulate the brain would likely cause cancer within a few months of use, if not a few days.


Edited by NotBrad, 30 October 2015 - 09:02 AM.


#9 CraigD

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Posted 01 November 2015 - 12:48 PM

Although you are correct in that all humans will have different layouts at the neuron level, the brain is still quite similar between individuals. The brain, as far as I know at least, has localized sets of neurons that perform certain functions, these "sections" of the brain are similar both in size and location between individuals(and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong guys).

That’s correct. It makes a lot of intuitive sense when you consider that the gross (larger scale) structure of the brain is controlled by our genes, and only tiny difference in these genes exist between individual humans, and only small difference between humans and may other animals. Our brains are not very dissimilar to those of chimpanzees (differing mostly in size), or even house cats (differing much in relative size of various regions).

On a sufficiently small scale, the connection of our roughly 100 000 000 000 neurons and the molecules that bias their excitatory and inhibitory sensitivity to their neighbors differ very significantly, because this is how our conscious and unconscious memories, personality traits, etc., are stored. Formation on this scale is much more rapid, and due much more to experience delivered by our senses than our genes.
 

But like I have said many times before, the problem with this technology lies not with the actual means of application or the concept itself, but in the calibration of said systems to function as an extension of the user.

I disagree. I think the actual means by which a brain-machine-interface is accomplished is the most critical and immanent part of the problem, because until it’s sufficiently solved, no input or output data exists to calibrate. Most non-neurologists, I think, greatly underappreciate how difficult this problem is.
 

I read an article a few weeks back about how the Massachusetts Institute of Technology(MIT) had successfully designed a system of very small "tubes" that could be inserted into the brain to deliver medicine, but they also said it could house wires instead. Assuming that this technology is past the concept stage and will or has already entered trials, we may see this technology emerge sooner than we thought.

I think you’re referring to recent work by Polina Anikeeva and colleagues, described in articles such as this 19 Jan 2015 MIT news article, and her 31 Jul 2015 TED talk.

A big thank you for leading me to this, NotBrad! :thumbs_up For a BCI fan like me (and, I assume, most of the people reading or posting in this forum) this is wonderful and exciting stuff.

From what I’ve read and watched, the thrust of Anikeeva’s approach to date involves a combination of Optogenetics (which inserts genes into neurons to make them sensitive to and emit visible light, though I believe Anikeeva’s work involves only making neurons sensitive to light, reading their activity electically) and fine (0.00001 to 0.0001 m, about the diameter of a hair) polymer fibers that can act as light guides, electrodes, and drug-delivering tubes. Much finer than the common commercial chronic electrodes used to treat disease like Parkinson’s (which are about 0.001 m), these fibers are also “softer” and more flexible, similar to small brain blood vessels, so they damage the brain less – though it’s still necessary to surgically penetrate the skull to implant them.

At about 11:30 in her TED video, Anikeeva talks about an entirely different, “wireless” approach. This involves injecting a solution of magnetic nanoparticles near specific neurons, then heating them with a changing magnetic field, which can produce an effect similar to the natural excitation of neurons. While interesting, and, I gather from the video, actually achieved, I don’t see how this could be done to create a BCI like the NerveGear, and while it’s “wireless”, brain injections are far from nonintrusive.

Some more specific education/career advice: go to MIT and get on Anikeeva’s team. She’s under 35 years old, so will likely be in the field for many years to come.
 

But the body is an incredible machine, and is capable of adapting to things like bionic limbs. These bionic limbs are not a "plug and play" system like what is seen in Sword Art Online, but it certainly is a proof of concept. I imagine that when this technology becomes a reality, there will be a lot of work that has to go into learning how to use the device. because lets face it, unless it is a system that works like a limb that is learned by the user, there will always be the potential for hacking into said device to harm the user.

Any device that can raise substantial voltages across neuron membranes, include present-day DBS systems and experimental systems like the Dobelle Eye, can be harmful to the user if they malfunction, accidentally or maliciously, causing seizures and other brain dysfunction. Present-day DBS system have potential serious psychiatric side-effects, including such things as compulsive gambling (which Anikeeva mentions in her TED talk) and hypersexuality. These problems with present day system are due to a lack of understanding of how they work, and their course spatial resolution, but even with improvements in these areas, the potential for short or long-term adverse effects is innate to a system with the ability to directly affect brain neurons.

It is, or course, possible to avoid this by not directly effecting the brain, but rather stimulating peripheral nerves. I don’t see much advantage of doing this other than through the already well-tuned sensory organs – eyes, ears, touch and heat receptors, etc.

As for reading and stimulating the wrong nerves, and the user training themselves to compensate, I don’t see much utility in this, other than for controlling prosthetic limbs, where the right nerves have been lost, or are not available due to lack of surgical technology. If you are going to train surrogate nerves to control and sense unusual real or virtual body parts, I think you’d do best to use those most capable – the fingers and hands. That is essentially what present day force-feedback video game and remote control system controllers – the present-day epitome of which are many-axis haptic control systems like the ones I mention in this post – do. After a short period of training, the user of typical video game controller feels fairly immersed in the game. I image the user of a more advanced system like the CyberGlove Haptic Workstation would feel even more immersed, and be capable of controlling a virtual world avatar with much greater precision and realism than in ordinary present-day video games.
 

After reading your comment CraigD, I think that the device concept is physically possible...

What I meant by “such a device” in “it’s still uncertain if any such device is physically possible” is an entirely non-intrusive system – one that doesn’t require sticking any physical object, even a micro or nano-scopic one – into the user’s brain

...but the sheer size of said device would be closer to this
moranis2-dark-helmet-spaceballs_xawesome
Than this
hqdefault.jpg

Or maybe this, an actual image of arguably the best truly non-intrusive neural activity imaging device presently available, a MEG machine?
D__NIMHRoot_IL_LibraryImages_Medium_MEG.jpg
In the case of MEG, the technology can likely be much miniaturized by using SREF magnetometers rather than the usual SQUIDs. Most of size of a MEG machine is due to the cooling system needed for its SQUIDs. This link from the Wikipedia article suggests that a complete SREF unit could be as small as 1 mm3, no larger than the typical EEG electrode
 

Plus the radiation required to constantly manipulate the brain would likely cause cancer within a few months of use, if not a few days.

As long as it’s not ionizing, radiation won’t itself cause cancer or other disease.

The only radiation to which any nerve cells (such as naturally occurring retinal cells in the eye, or cells artificially altered via optogenetic techniques) are sensitive is in the visible spectrum, so EM radiation used to manipulate the brain won’t directly harm it.

This isn’t true of radiation used to image the brain, such as the X-rays used in CAT scanners, which is ionizing.

#10 NotBrad

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Posted 02 November 2015 - 12:50 PM

CraigD, you certainly gave given me a lot to think about, and I was also unaware that there had been a TED Talk about the research done at MIT, thanks for letting me know about that! But I certainly do agree with you about some things, and there certainly needs to be a lot more research done before any progress can be made with a technology such as this.

 

But maybe, some day.



#11 Puppy7718

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Posted 18 November 2015 - 05:02 PM

Hi I've been reading a lot of posts about building something like the nerve gear. I have watched many videos on when we could achieve something like this. I'm 14 and I'm going into highschool next year. What should I take up since I'm thinking of going to a school that has Information Technology and Software Engineering as one high school, then it has biotech school, then the last school is the engineering high school. I'm going to apply here but I was wondering which school you guys think I should apply for. That would be most helpful in creating what we want.



#12 pgrmdave

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 10:33 AM

Hi I've been reading a lot of posts about building something like the nerve gear. I have watched many videos on when we could achieve something like this. I'm 14 and I'm going into highschool next year. What should I take up since I'm thinking of going to a school that has Information Technology and Software Engineering as one high school, then it has biotech school, then the last school is the engineering high school. I'm going to apply here but I was wondering which school you guys think I should apply for. That would be most helpful in creating what we want.

Which aspect are you most interested in? Any of those schools will be useful to your longterm career hopes, there is no best.  But by choosing something you're excited about, you're more likely to learn more and do better.  



#13 Puppy7718

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Posted 19 November 2015 - 03:51 PM

Well the software one. That's the one I really want to do.

#14 pgrmdave

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Posted 20 November 2015 - 10:30 AM

Well the software one. That's the one I really want to do.

The the IT/Software Engineering is the school to go to, definitely :-)



#15 Puppy7718

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Posted 23 November 2015 - 04:07 PM

The the IT/Software Engineering is the school to go to, definitely :-)

Thanks my dad said the we would apply for that school on thursday.


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#16 Puppy7718

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Posted 31 December 2015 - 09:29 PM

Okay so what about NeuroLinker from Accel World. That could work too, I guess before we can make the NeuroLInker we have to create the Nerve Gear. But I thought I should at least mention it.



#17 NotBrad

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Posted 03 January 2016 - 04:40 PM

Okay so what about NeuroLinker from Accel World. That could work too, I guess before we can make the NeuroLInker we have to create the Nerve Gear. But I thought I should at least mention it.

No, in fact the NeuroLinker is actually more practical as a first step than the NerveGear. This is because the device functions as an extension of the user rather than a replacement environment. The system simply overwrites the data being sent to the brain rather than replacing it, meaning this technology would actually represent less HCI components than a NerveGear-like device and also require less memory, signal bandwidth, and resolution output to function. Such a device would easily run on today's hardware without a hitch and would certainly provide a massive economic base to further develop the technology for future devices that could also contain full dive functionality.


Edited by NotBrad, 03 January 2016 - 04:42 PM.