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How Long Until We Could Make A Real Sword Art Online (sao) Nerve Gear Type Device


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I did a little poking around (unfortunately I haven't been able to invest more time as I originally anticipated so I'm not overly done with looking on the Internet for some answers or talking to my professors about what I'm looking for.

 

But after conversing with my psych professor, we both found this technology called BrainGate. Supposedly it is used for those who have lost a limb or suffer from other medical issues. Again I wasn't able to look too much into it, but if I understand it correctly, it intercepts signals being sent to the brain to a specific location (like a calf or lower arm for example) from the brain stem where the majority of the neurons pass through on the way to the rest of the body. And if I'm not mistaken, if it can intercept these signals and be modified and written with these specific programs and algorithms.

 

And once again I apologize for not getting back sooner, giving better information, or credible (if this is not worth looking to then I apologize again)

 

I will keep looking into this further. Hopefully I can find more information.

 

By the way www.braingate.com is the URL.

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Moderation note: This is the original post that lead to the creation of the FullDive Technology” subforum. Posts have been moved from it into other threads, according to subject, to make them shorter

Welcome to hypography jacob2mitts! Please feel free to start a topic in the introductions forum to tell us something about yourself.   How Long Until We Could Make A Real Sword Art Online (sao) Nerve

Remind me again of the evidence that we are not already in a simulation. :)

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But after conversing with my psych professor, we both found this technology called BrainGate. Supposedly it is used for those who have lost a limb or suffer from other medical issues. Again I wasn't able to look too much into it, but if I understand it correctly, it intercepts signals being sent to the brain to a specific location (like a calf or lower arm for example) from the brain stem where the majority of the neurons pass through on the way to the rest of the body.

The Braingate system, which gets its signal via an implanted 0.004 x 0.004 m array of 100 or 96 moderately thin (about 0.0001 m) electrodes doesn’t get signals from the brainstem, which is at the bottom of the brain, but from the motor cortex, which is at the top of it.

 

There are 2 generation of the Braingate system, the original one first implanted in a human in 2004, which requires a bundle of wires to pierce the skin, and the “Braingate2” system first implanted in 2011, in which the implanted unit is completely internal, getting power via a radio frequency signal and outputting its data through the skin via an infrared laser. This 2004 Wired article and this 2009 SingularityHUB article have good description of the systems.

 

All the Braingate systems look something like this

 

BrainGate technology is owned by a private company, so getting detailed information about it is difficult. Because you’ve got to be have a brain surgery team to implant them, they’re not for the hobbyist. Although the system hasn’t yet gotten to the point where it can be used for limited, short-term experimental use, interest in and funding of it remains high, because of it could allow people with spinal injuries and brain diseases like ALS to control computers, speech generators, manipulator arms, etc.

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After watching Sao like most people 15-16 yrs old here i created this account mainly for the purpose of posting on this thread , what i'm curios about is would the nerve gear ever be possible ?  not trying to discourage you guy but the entire idea seem impossible without any danger to the user brain .. .

 

Extra info - Please excuse my lack of knowledge in sciene and english C:

Edited by Genesis
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Hi guys.

I've read the post and would like to know if anyone started organizing this into a workgroup yet?

The topic starter wasn't active since his one and only post in July, so I guess it's safe to count him out
Redpandaman73 mentioned making a website - we might need that.
zazz54 also mentioned organizing some team - would be glad to hear about any progress.

After reading this thread my ideas are boiled down to the following:

1.    Regarding computer->brain data transfer, I find using conventional methods more practical:
1.1) 90% (bandwidth-wise) of sensory data is visual:
it's much more practical to use the existing eyes, rather then try to directly write to the optical parts of the brain.

Oculus Rift,

Project Morpheus, 

Project Magic Leap:

- these seem to be making progress in the area. Use them!

1.2) another 9% of sensory data is audio: use quality headphones, duh!
So for 99% of sensory data there is just no need to try to write to nerves/brain directly, provided the user has functional eyes and ears.
1.3) For tactile sensory data - it requires low bandwidth, because the spacial resolution required for an SAO-like environment would be, off the top of my head - hundreds of "pixels" on the human skin. Temporal resolution - 5-10 Hz, and depth resolution: say, 5*3 = 15 bits per pixel, would give us a scale of 0 to 7 for: pressure, heat, cold, touch, and pain (that's the 5 types of receptors human skin has). That gives us ~10-100 kbit/s interface. The only way to transfer this data into the brain/spinal cord seems the invasive one, with implanted microwires. This is research project #1.
1.4) taste and smell... let's scratch these for now.

2. Regarding brain->computer interfaces:
The state-of-the art in this area seems to be the Emotiv EPOC+ device. This is research project #2: how far can we go with the EPOC+ in controlling an avatar?

3. Regarding blocking motorics from reaching actual muscles (assuming we want the user to rest in bed/armchair vs being hanged on special straps) - on this one (research project #3) I will quote CraigD:

Setting aside the “don’t” solution, it merits pointing out that we humans (and many biologically similar animals) already have a system built in that suppresses our motor functions while allowing us to experience an immersive VR simulation: our dream state, REM sleep. Though not fully understood, we know from experiments going back more than 65 years that a well-defined brainstem structure, the pontine tegmentum, is responsible for inhibiting our muscles during sleep. If this structure is physically damaged or chemically suppressed, a dreaming animal physically acts out its dreams, walking, jumping, etc. This video is from one such experiment, I think by Michel Jouvet ca 1960. Malfunctions of this system are suspected to cause disorders such as sleepwalking and sleep paralysis.

The idea of creating a common dream vs a digital world seems very vague and unrealistic. At least I have no slightest clue how to approach that. Let's keep it digital (WoW-like), for now.

Now, I'm 25, I have a M.S. in Physics with concentration in Computer Science, and currently work as a software developer. I tried pulling off an indie game project back when I was in college, it didn't work out well but at least I got some experience. That's to give you team organizers a very general idea of how I could contribute to the project. I think posting a link to my CV / portfolio would be overkill, at least at this stage :-D

 

That said, I think that getting something of this level done is a full-time job, but for a start I'd like to contribute to the group in my free time.

Moreover, my father is a neuroscientist (what a coincidence!). He showed moderate interest in the project, and is overall quite sceptical. But he is willing to share knowledge to contribute to such a project.

Redpandaman73, zazz54, anyone - let me know how far have you gone in organizing this little geek R&D team, my email is [email protected], Skype "shodan_nsu".

Cheers!

Edited by Shodan
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Hey everyone. I have been reading this with keen interest as well. Having watched Sword Art Online season 1, I found the concept of NerveGear really daunting. Let alone the costs to run one of these, we'd have the health and safety of everyone to consider, power protection points in the event of a short circuit, however theres a couple of things I'd like to contribute too :)

 

First off, as enthusiastic as everyone's being, barely anyone seems to be quoting direct from SAO, which is where the initial inspiration came from. So as long as we reference it directly, we should be able to cover a majority of details.

 

One link I used for a little base research was from this link,

Www.swordartonline.wikia.com/wiki/nervegear

 

This gave me a couple of hints on where to start. But the show itself gave some hints along the way.

 

For example, the nervegear has internal storage. But no one told us how the initial setup of the user profile was made. It's entirely possible, instead of writing direct to the mind about most of our senses, it created a digital map of the mind and stored it onto the IS. With that, just a few base tests would be needed to measure brain functions on a proactive way. Visual tests, audio tests, vocal, etc. This would allow the nervegear to configure you sensibly and produce more accurate results.

Second, is the mention of microwave technology being used to kill the players. It's entirely possible we can use the microwave signals to keep a sharp monitor of the brain and scan the facial features of the players, in order to project themselves correctly into the game.

 

But the biggest detail I found was the hint at using diamond-semiconductor processors.

 

Https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/diamond-based-cpus.440893

 

I read through this and found it really interesting. If we had one or two of these working in the helmet, and insisted on using microwave technology, it's entirely possible to have, instead of one giant electro-magnet in the helmet, have a small honeycomb of multiple scanners sending results at the same time to the processor. This would give us an MRI-like scan of the brain, most likely in seconds.

 

This is using information gleaned from the series as a whole, and I believe so long as we keep our mind focused on what the show provides, then we'll have a firm structure to work around. Flesh out on it.

However, I'd personally prefer to keep this to a small group of people at any one time. It would mean exclusive rights and no corporate intervention. All it would take is a contracted intervention before the entire system could become unstable we already saw what Kayaba Akihiko did as the creator of SAO and his predecessor, the crazy, egotistical maniac, who I'd gladly have killed myself. Scum he is.

 

But there's no denying people like that exist out there. And we dont want people's lives being gambled for an extra penny or two from the consumers.

 

 

Either that or it's just my distrust in all of humanity to actually want to do something to help each other :(

 

Either way, I'm happy to contribute towards this, and as far as a website reserved for this conversation? I'd say forget it. We can still commune here, because all the information we need is already out there and accessible to everyone. So all it takes is another team to dig up what we have and we'll have competition. But no harm in having a distribution list in our respective mail clients to send sensitive data across :) I'm more than happy to share me email to those who want it.

 

Anyways, I've harped on too much :p I do get a bit carried away sometimes *blush*

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Wait, sorry. couple of corrections (I'm on a smart phone. Damned thing is horrible to use).

1. The first link somehow broke itself, so just need to click on the 'search for nervegear' link it provides and you should get the page I had.

2. That crazy guy wasnt Kayaba's predecessor... i used the wrong word :p

3. Sorry if I went off on a tangent at any point. Just hoping I got across what I was trying to say.

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But hey, five2fly, since you suggested it: "So I want to follow the idea that someone stated earlier about making a "master list" on what we need to start." - yo the "man." You get to make the master list, or collaborate with those most knowledgeable on this subject, and who wish to be part of just such a collaboration. For my part, as stated earlier, I wish to write about what you guys actually come up with.

hey, so i'm no neuroscientist (just a mere firefighter) however i am an avid gamer, which through looking up on occulus (visual) and virtuix omni(game treadmill) development; i remembered watching sao and in doing so brought me here. i read the first couple pages which inspired me to look more in depth on the progress with vr advancements and came across a few interesting items that are still low key in the modern world. figured if you or anyone would begin research of the sorts into this could start here:

 

the first one was myo ( https://www.thalmic.com/en/myo/ ) which is simply using muscle memory to control distinct objects with less movement, from further away. not that it would connect with vr directly, its an interesting machine which reads muscle fibers and relays their commands to a central system(whether a helicopter, music system, video, or rover). 

 

the main one which got me all giddy into thinking sao is closer than i considered(2030 at least haha). the machine is called the emotiv or epoc+ ( 

) which takes brainwave patterns and uses it to control things. basically a wireless eeg. i watched another video on it and so far it seems it can (with simply thinking it!) wirelessly control smartphones, romote cars, can read your current emotions & facial expressions (winking, smiling, raise eyebrow etc), as well as control the way a computer generated block moves(push,pull,twist, the works).

they have a main website as well ( http://emotiv.com/ ) however it didnt have much for videos or the like, mostly just why you should buy something with currently minimal functionality -_-. HOWEVER, it is a big step forward in this gaming concept.

 

i know absolutely nil about the neurological aspect all this entails but i do understand its not the export of information which could be the real problem, but the import through touch, taste, and smell. i mean taking the eeg headset+occulus you could technically (with practice) pull/push/turn/jump using a 3rd person game format. obviously a lot more fine tuning would be needed before it can do things such as swing a sword/open menus and the more finer details of gaming. i believe if the myo was somehow adapted to connect to the emotiv and occulus, the myo could be used for such fine details like swinging swords, using menus and the like. an immersed 3rd person minecraft is closer than we thought haha, which would be one of the easiest type of games to learn basic controls.

 

reason i say 3rd person is because without a designated center point it would be a lot harder to push/pull an object... matter of fact, right after i finished writing all this i realised that since it used emotions to relay basic information, a game would spark too much activity and cause greater amounts of errors to occur hahahaha dammit -_-. however that doesnt take away from the fact it is that one step closer to vr tech,just needs to be more precise.

 

and imported touch taste smell i doubt will have a breakthrough for at least another 5 years, thats just insane amount of tech needed for me to feel like i am walking into a bakery and stubbed my toe. kinda scary if you think that things like that could possibly be replicated.

 

and i dont know if the "writing into nerves/brain" or matrix style connections been denied yet however i dont think anyone will be willing to get actually physically connected to any machines such as these. it is just too dangerous as well as having the possibility of a computer virus actually invading your body and possibly shutting down various systems. since they would be used to connect worldwide.

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@shodan, it's nice to see another person who is enthusiastic about the concept of this specific device. And as I have stated earlier, I am a general college student focusing in psychology and neurology (gotta start somewhere!) But since you have an idea on where we should focus on, then how do you propose we start out? As I've mentioned in the past, a lot of the information is jumbled around in random areas of this specific thread. I would like to start on a focused obstacle at some point.

 

And correct me if I'm wrong (and I'm used to being wrong) but the concept idea from the SAO series, I understand we want to build a reality world that actually places us (for lack of a better term) "inside our own minds" but we aren't trying to copy the nerve gear right? My main reason for bringing it up is because I've seen multiple groups out there (my guess is that they're just hardcore fans of the series) trying to replicate it, and one including actually using the activation term like in the series... I think it was "burst link"?

 

But getting off track, I just want to make sure that we're working towards our objective by working off what's practical and not what's depicted in the series. Again feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, it's how I learn.

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There are many fiction stories, which all are awesome (except maybe Matrix, which was kinda meh...*ducks behind a wall from the frag granades and beer cans thrown at me*).  They all looked different, they all were based on the scientific knowledge and speculative theories of their repsective times, all except for the newest maybe are already proeven to not work the way the fiction's lore described it. 

The plan was, if I understand correctly, to create a feasable completely immersive full dive virtual reality system that would be able to create virtual reality environments which are in at least 80% of all aspect indistinguishable from the physical world in order to create video games of the type and immersiveness of SAO.  So far, I think the microfiber with nano sensors embeded into individual neurons would be the most feasable option.  But I am really no scientist, so I can't tell.

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Hi all, I would like to express some of my opinions on this topic that I find rather interesting:

first, I apoligize in advance for some of my lack of detailed knowledge about on some of these areas, however I agree with the "creation" of a kind of NerveGear kind taht exist in SAO, however the information read in this thread I could summarize a few points which,with current technology, we have  several shortcomings.

how were they developed VR devices like the Oculus Rift and Leap Motion, we done several  "breakthroughs" in VR technology, however what I read I could deduce that the real problem of brain-computer interface is tied mostly to the sensations that you perceived, even(referring to the anime SAO) be aware while using a device such as the NerveGear, reproducing the impulse given by one part of our brain only for a specific fuction within the game/program, such as the articulation movement or through a movement to pick up an object, being able to feel the consistency and other data, and send that information to our nervous system. However, about the last topic that I have mentioned, we must always bear in mind not to block the functions of the hypothalamus (autonomous functions such as breathing and heartbeat) or other damage.

In any case this modernization of VR tchnology can be useful in many fields including medicine (the most important in my opinion), even commercial, mentioning once SAO; related to the latter, by myself I started to do some surveys in the region where I liveif it could affect a play VRMMORPG according to different age groups, getting mostly a positive response; trade, however in my opinion, presents several disadvantages to a few factors: the addiction to the game, the cost of producing such world class equipment,...etc so even if this a secondary issue.

However I would agree to work on such a topic, or more correctly, to give my contribution to a similar project, although I'm now finishing high school.

I apologize for my bad English.

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I have finally finished watching GGO and the SAOII mini series.

 

It appears quite evident in the first or second GGO episode that systems like Occular Rift or Morpheus won't be good enough for a full dive system.  The character Sugun has in the real world strongly blurred vision and needs to wear corrective glasses, in the game however, she is a top sniper with perfect vision.  This proves that the system directly accesses the visual cortex and does not go through the eyes (which also would disqualify the optical synthesis aproach that can be seen in Armitage III and Ghost in the Shell.)

That aside, I would not consider Occular Rift or Morpheus to be virtual reality, even if it has a motion and position tracker and allows you to turn your head in-game.  It really is just an advanced form of 3D screen...at most suitable to be called True-3D, but nowhere near VR.

 

The reason why VR appears to be not very popular is not the idea of VR itself but rather that the older VR systems are sub par and more cumbersome and inconvenience than the supposed advantages they bring. 

I have an old ULTIMA REALITY game controler headset, which consists of a helmet with headphones, microphone, basic and poor tracking ability and a single-hand controler which, while comfortable to hold, is poorly designed and doesn't respond well.  It is set up that when you turn your head, the monitor shows the turn in the display, like when the ingame character turns the head. Only problem, the monitor is still where it is and you would have to turn your eyes in the oposite direction to still see the monitor.  Added to that, it is heavier at the rear, putting a strain on the neck if used over longer periods of time.  Additionally to that, it needs a wire connection to the sensor that stands on the monitor or desk, and while not very heavy, it still causes an asymetric pull on the head and is notorically too short.  Also, the helmet is not adjustable and seems to be made for people with small heads...or maybe my head is just too big....it is very uncomfortable to wear.  I used it once for abut five minutes and boxed it away.

Other so called VR systems I have seen were not really much better.  For the most realistic and comfortable ones I have seen, you need a huge room just for the 360^2 gyro-rig, the suit alone costs a few thousand pounds and the power consumption is more than any standard civilian fusebox would be able to take. 

It seems almost as if the developers have given up on VR and are just focussing on the visual aspect of VR by creating the 3D Cinemas, TVs and screen goggles (Morpheus and OR).  I have seen the videos about OR and it looks less clunky than my ULTIMA REALITY, but with worse asymetrical weight distribution to the front rather than to the back.  The Morpheus looks lighter and thinner on the pictures and videos, which indicates the center of gravity being closer to the middle.  But all that True-3D VR technology is useless for people who need strong corrective glasses.

As for headphones, all they can do at present is simulate left-right directional hearing.  You would need headphones that has at least five speaker for each ear to simulate sounds from front, behind, above, below and combinations thereof.  Alternatively, you could use a helmet that has an array of speakers distributed evenly for the True-3D sound. The helmet would have the benefit of possibly holding the True-3D goggles in the same unit, which results in less cost and less cables/power requirements.   And again...people who are hard of hearing or deaf would not be able to benefit from it much.

 

With the Full Dive systems presented in fiction, even the intrusive and wire-connected ones, you don't have jarring on your head by the weight of equipment and cables because you would be in a relaxed and supported position (leaning back or laying down) and don't notice any cumbersomeness due to the fact that the entire consciousness is shifted into the VR environment, not only the eyes and ears.  The system could allow for external acces to the user via camera and microphone attached to the system, allowing the Diver to see what is going on and be comunicated with by someone in Meat-Space., speakers would allow them to even respond without having to log out.  Internally, such a communication would just open up a hud window, no different from the menu hud and graphical user interface, showing what the camera can see and conveying the voice input-output.  With a monitor connected, people in Meat-Space would be able to see what the Diver sees.  This widen the possible uses of that system beyond games into the realm of training, teaching and similar....It could even allow for cross-system communication in the form we already see with Voice-over-IP systems like Skype, allowing a Diver to call a real phone from inside the VR environmnet.

It is true that many casual gamers would be hesitant to go with an intrusive system and parents and medical professionals might even completely completely oppose them, but enthusiasts would quite likely not sweat the small print and buy it for the sake of the experience, or at the very least as collector item.  If it can be proven before medical panels to be safe, doctors would at the most insist that the instalation of the instrusive elements would have to be done under medical supervision.  Politicians and corporate lobbyists would fully support the idea and send their spiel masters out to sway public oppinion, if they believe they can gain further influence over people's behavior and opinions, especially in the fields of elections and targeted advertisement.

 

The statement made in GGO, that one can not kill with a virtual bullet, is wrong.  Theway the system is described, even with the upgraded versions, microwaves are used to read neural activity and induce the simulation.  The entire brain region is essencially submerged in an electromagnetic microwave field.  With a program that gives the wrong (or right, depending on your standpint) instructions, the brain can be told to stop the heartbeat, which would medically show the same results as the victims of Death Gun had, cardiac arrest without damage to the brain.  No need for outside assistance.

This is why intrusive methods, like the suggested micro-fibers, would be the way to go, rather than an unintrusive elecromagnetic scan/projection based method.  With micro-fibers, you can make sure that the system doesn't get anywhere near the vegetative nervous system and can set the contacts to the motoric system to be read-only.  If the system needs access to the vegetative centers for bio-monitoring, those contacts can be set read-only as well.

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Its yet impossible technically in my opinion, but what craig said was all correct. But we wont need a ready script until we have the final product, do we. I believe if the worlds best scientists, medic, techinians and smart people all over the world work together, then it will be an achievable goal. I study at a IT uni in Estonia, write alorithms since im like 11, we have made so much amazing projects so far but would be awesome to go a step ahead of everyone else. This is such an amazing idea, I would anyday participate in such stuff ;) Anyways, this thread has caught my attention and I will be discussing this with you troughout the process. Oh by the way ocolus rift doesn't stand a chance next to nervegear, its complete trash next to it. If you really wanna go through the expirience you need to live it only in the virtual world, yet and allways will be that oculus rift wont push the limits of what they already done.

Edited by IsseiKun
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All I'll say is, I personally feel that creating a virtual brain to be stored on the NerveGear would be the better option. Quicker to have the full brain scans set to measure your responses on initial setup and store it. Sync your brain with your body and process the signals so you can cut both off without affecting one another.

 

As for technical specifications, work with what we know. MRI scans have proven efficient but take too long because its one giant magnetic scanner. But in hundreds of smaller ones, you wont have the great amount of power, but it can also be reserved for initial setup, then used afterwards to isolate the brain from the spine... somehow.

 

Maybe I'm being a bit too vague and have no real science to back it up, but there's no harm in throwing ideas around. Eventually they'll clash together and make something awesome :)

 

 

However, sorry to say IsseiKun, but if all the doctors and scientists and geniuses in the world could work together, most first and third world problems wouldn't exist because they'd have figured it all out. We have the knowledge but not the patience to just think it all out. And we cant all work together, because we create our small groups through diversity, and choose to either stand together or stand apart. I dont believe that any conglomorate of world-wide resources such as that could exist.

And if you want to prove me wrong, find every site and forum involving research into the Nerve Gear and Sword Art Online and invite them all to work together, from the same location. Start up a kickstarter and get the world to fund it.

But even then I dont see it working because everyone wants competition. Everyone would prefer to get the gold, rather than join anyone else going for silver.

 

Sorry for being pessimistic and cynical, I dont mean to shoot down the amazing amount of ambition that's gathered here, but I cant help but see this technology simply falling apart like everything else. Technological advancement these days isnt about stabalising what's already present, but finding the issue and building something else around the resolution. Never taking the time out to look at everything that went wrong, because they get more money that way, and it's always about money :(getting more and more of it every day).

 

Once again, I want to be proven wrong. I want to see my doubt in humanity, as a whole, being a creation of my own insecurities. So prove me wrong guys, please.

 

sincerest apologies again if I've demoralised anyone. I tend to try to remove the bad so that we're always left with the good... doesn't always work :(

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All I'll say is, I personally feel that creating a virtual brain to be stored on the NerveGear would be the better option. Quicker to have the full brain scans set to measure your responses on initial setup and store it. Sync your brain with your body and process the signals so you can cut both off without affecting one another.

 

As for technical specifications, work with what we know. MRI scans have proven efficient but take too long because its one giant magnetic scanner. But in hundreds of smaller ones, you wont have the great amount of power, but it can also be reserved for initial setup, then used afterwards to isolate the brain from the spine... somehow.

 

Maybe I'm being a bit too vague and have no real science to back it up, but there's no harm in throwing ideas around. Eventually they'll clash together and make something awesome :)

 

 

However, sorry to say IsseiKun, but if all the doctors and scientists and geniuses in the world could work together, most first and third world problems wouldn't exist because they'd have figured it all out. We have the knowledge but not the patience to just think it all out. And we cant all work together, because we create our small groups through diversity, and choose to either stand together or stand apart. I dont believe that any conglomorate of world-wide resources such as that could exist.

And if you want to prove me wrong, find every site and forum involving research into the Nerve Gear and Sword Art Online and invite them all to work together, from the same location. Start up a kickstarter and get the world to fund it.

But even then I dont see it working because everyone wants competition. Everyone would prefer to get the gold, rather than join anyone else going for silver.

 

Sorry for being pessimistic and cynical, I dont mean to shoot down the amazing amount of ambition that's gathered here, but I cant help but see this technology simply falling apart like everything else. Technological advancement these days isnt about stabalising what's already present, but finding the issue and building something else around the resolution. Never taking the time out to look at everything that went wrong, because they get more money that way, and it's always about money :(getting more and more of it every day).

 

Once again, I want to be proven wrong. I want to see my doubt in humanity, as a whole, being a creation of my own insecurities. So prove me wrong guys, please.

 

sincerest apologies again if I've demoralised anyone. I tend to try to remove the bad so that we're always left with the good... doesn't always work :(

 

Looking closer at what you say I only have one conclusion - it's mostly true, but we can still give it a go and try, couldn't we? The world advances, technology advances, human beings advance in intelligence, there will soon be nothing that is IMPOSSIBLE right IMPOSSIBLE to make as we will carry on advancing as we go  ;) I don't doubt your words, again, everything you said is true as what people are looking for is mostly money, eventually anyway, and it doesn't matter what type of person it was, thought there is kind and fun people all around the world, same as fun and nice scientists, geniuses, technicians and I hope oneday we can gather a group of all mentioned there <--. 

Edited by IsseiKun
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Ok, once again I got the time to think on this, and came up with a few ideas:

Fist of all: let’s break down the project into smaller, tangible parts. Distribute some tasks and set some deadlines.

                   Nerve Gear Project

  1. Sensory input (ways to invade the nerve system)
    1. Haptic feedback
      5 types of skin sensors (heat, cold, pressure, touch, pain)
      How to input a signal into a haptic nerve
      How to input a signal into a SPECIFIC haptic nerve
      Where to access the nerves.
      Optional: affecting the corresponding haptic parts of the brain directly. Same questions.
    2. Acceleration feedback (our biological G-sensor)
      Ways to mechanically affect the inner ear liquid without actually moving the head.
      Ways to simulate the nerves coming from the inner ear without the liquid actually moving.
    3. Proprioceptive nerve system. Similar to haptic nerve system – ways to invade it and make the brain feel as if our limbs are in a different position than they are.
  2. Control outpur (ways to read the brain)
    Try out and figure out the effectiveness and limitations of system like:
    1. Emotiv EPOC+
    2. Sulon's Cortex Augmented VR
    3. Other ways to read brain activity. Uninvasive or minimally invasive.
  3. Ways to block motoric signals from reaching musles
    1. Using Pontine Tegmentum (how to deliver it to the corresponding part of the brain?).
  1. Non-chemical activation of brain region normally activated by Pontine Tegmentum.

 

Ok. Next steps (as I see it – all criticism including rotten tomatoes welcome): volunteers among us take on parts of this research, do the preliminary, and in say 1 week compile a very brief and condensed (half a page) report on each of the items outlined above. Make it as good as you would present to your boss / an official peer review.

Then we can iterate, make decisions on which branches seem more promising, and go into deeper research on those.

Also, before we have a website – out of the existing methods of communication and exchanging ideas, files, and any data in general on a persistent and structured platform - I believe vk.com could be a nice starting point, so I just now made a group there, so you can register and try it out:
http://vk.com/club85135671
Registering in VK is the least of the troubles one might have to go through to become part of the team. Of course I look forward to having a dedicated website of our own. Once again, you are welcome to contact me through email ([email protected]).

Edited by Shodan
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The statement made in GGO, that one can not kill with a virtual bullet, is wrong. The way the system is described, even with the upgraded versions, microwaves are used to read neural activity and induce the simulation. The entire brain region is essencially submerged in an electromagnetic microwave field. With a program that gives the wrong (or right, depending on your standpint) instructions, the brain can be told to stop the heartbeat, which would medically show the same results as the victims of Death Gun had, cardiac arrest without damage to the brain. No need for outside assistance.

As in most science fiction, the writers of SAO/ALO/GGO take a lot of artistic license with science, so science-minded viewers should be cautious about considering the anime dialog scientifically accurate.

 

SAO hints that the NerveGear, and its successor, the AmuSphere, read and write to the brain using microwave (wavelength about 0.01 – 1 m) EM radiation. I know of no credible scientific evidence that this is possible.

 

Microwaves at present, and likely for many years to come, are used mainly for 3 things: radio communication; radar detection and imaging; and heating.

 

You can’t use radio communication to read or write to the brain, because the brain doesn’t have a radio antenna. The eyes can sense EM radiation at the much shorter wavelength of visible light (0.0000004 to 0.0000007 m), but nothing in the brain is very sensitive to any kind of EM radiation.

 

You can in principle use radar to image the brain, but only at very low spatial resolution. Spatial resolution for Radar or any EM radiation depends on the diameter of the receiving “aperture”, the distance to the object being imaged, and the wavelength of EM radiation. In the case of some array of sensors that could be fit around your head, imaging surface of the brain with the shortest wavelength (0.0027 m) radar, this works out to about 0.0003 m, worse than the unaided human eye and much to course to see neurons. Just seeing neurons doesn’t let you see their firing – for that, you’d need to be able to see individual atoms passing thought their membranes, requiring a spatial resolution of about 0.0000000002 m (10-10).

 

While heating the brain with microwaves seems like a bad idea, it actually produces a creaking/buzzing/clicking sound detectable by the cochlea (part of the inner ear). This first noticed by people who stood in the beams of radar transceivers when they were first deployed in WWII. Called the Frey effect after the person who explained it around 1960, research suggested it could be used to communicate recognizable speech. However, since prolonged heating of the brain like this can injure it, this technology was abandoned, except for systems designed to scare off birds and people, like the infamous MEDUSA non-lethal crowd control weapon.

 

In short, microwaves and other EM radiation aren’t good for brain reading or writing. The idea sounds cool, and due to real phenomena like the Frey effect, vaguely plausible, so was a good choice for a science fiction story like Sword Art Onlines, but it almost certainly wouldn’t really work.

 

Though present day noninvasive technologies such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) can read and write to the brain, their resolution, especially the “writing” via TMS, is too low resolution for a computer-brain interface.

 

It appears quite evident in the first or second GGO episode that systems like Occular Rift or Morpheus won't be good enough for a full dive system. The character Sugun has in the real world strongly blurred vision and needs to wear corrective glasses, in the game however, she is a top sniper with perfect vision. This proves that the system directly accesses the visual cortex and does not go through the eyes (which also would disqualify the optical synthesis aproach that can be seen in Armitage III and Ghost in the Shell.)

...

But all that True-3D VR technology is useless for people who need strong corrective glasses.

This isn’t true.

 

Though the technical details are tricky, in principle, computer displays, including ones like those inside an Occulus Rift or Morpheus VR headset, could correct visual defects.

 

There’s much commercial interest in such systems, as not only can they allow people to use computers without wearing glasses, and thus with less eye strain, they can also correct defects that can’t be corrected with ordinary eyeglasses. This 2014 UC Berkley news article describes some recent work.

 

That said, it’s clear that in the fictional SAO/ALO/GGO, that the NerveGear/AmuSphere is sending visual sensations directly to the brain or optic nerves, not using the eyes.

 

Such technology would be wonderful for people with damaged or missing eyes or optic nerves, because it could restore their vision, or in the cases of people born with such defects, give it to them, something that people have been trying hard to do for over 50 years. Earlier in this thread, in this post, I linked to this Wired magazine article, a good one about such work by the late William Dobelle.

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Kilravok, I agree with most of what you say - yes the only way this will see light is if someone works on it as a startup, or joins one of the existing VR corporations. The hobby-level is good for only gathering knowledge and figuring out what is possible, if so - how exactly, and what isn't.

I also believe you sociology teacher was right. That doesn't change much though.

 

Visual and audio input directly into the brain is surgical-only, and it is literally about 100+ times heavier bandwidth-wise than haptic, gyro, taste/smell, and motoric feedback. That's why I'd prefer not to touch them. The technology to access those is beyond the horizon.

 

Haptic, gyro, and motoric feedback are essential for a SAO-like game.

 

Taste - well really, nothing beats eating yummy food in real-life :-3 That's somewhere very low on the priorities list.

 

Smell - well, sometimes it seems that it's mostly a problem of humans, rather than a useful sensory input. Otherwise people wouldn't be using deodorants and instead would remember each others' smell. In the modern American society it's commonly considered that body odor is something bad, and honestly - considering the efforts people make to avoid all kinds of unpleasant smells - it would almost be better if we'd lack smell in the real world. Personally I couldn't care less about modeling smell in a VRMMORPG.

 

"At what point will it stop being working on a hoby in our spare time and become work that we expect payment for?"

- when there will be enough stuff we collect/generate for free to get crowd funding, like good (read: "the VERY few VERY good ones") startup projects do.

Or - get funding from some business investor (read: "a middle-aged rich man or women that we would be able to impress strong enough that they give us money... Approximately a few million dollars.")

 

Until then - yes, we have to work for free. Weekends, long nights, etc. There are 168 hours a week, let's say 40-50 are work/school, another 40 is sleep (or should be, anyways). Leaves ~78-88 hours for all the rest, and running chores is not 80 hours a week.

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