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nia game controller - does it work?

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I showed a similar article to my father 6 months back. I thought it was a cool technology though I didnt see much use for it. Makes no sense but cool concept nonetheless

My dad, being also a gadget geek, bought it for me as a surprise xmas present.

I can tell you that thing is a complete waste of money.

The controller works in 2 ways: By the movement of your facial muscles (jaw and eyebrows) and by reading your brain waves.

jaw and eyebrows controls are 2 inputs each. think of them as rudder pedal equivalents. raise right eyebrow and you can keymap something to happen... raise left eyebrow, something else happens. however nothing happens when you lower your eyebrow. The thing simply detects the electric impulse that tells your muscle to contract (not relax). Same with the jaw (clench, unclench).

The brainwave reading system is a complete fiasco. The device needs to be 'trained' to your brain patterns..and your brain needs to be trained to 'think' in terms that the device will pick up.

for example, I tried to use it in a 3rd person MMO. I assigned the brainwave pattern thingy to camera view 3rd person.

despite weeks of trying, the camera just rotated in wild random directions. The only thing I could get right was to make it stop by simply relaxing and trying to think 'numbness' ... it lowered all my brainwaves to low level so the device did not do anything.

the video demo they use to promote the device is ONLY using the muscle input NOT the brainwave input.

for a computer game its completely worthless. In a game you get excited or frustrated which instantly makes the brainwave reading part of the device useless. in a game you always squint or change facial expression depending on the situation (raise eyebrow when surprised (aka an EI comes around the corner shooting), you HAVE to open and close your jaw to TALK to people if you use voice comms... and that alone makes the muscle detection system useless.

Its an interesting device and the only use ive found for it is for personal stuff... i really like to be able to see one's brainwaves change as you read a book, meditate, do a math problem... fascinating stuff to see what frequencies your brain uses for certain tasks.

You're far better off spending the money on a TRACK IR system than this.

Edited by skyfallr

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