It's as if it can read your mind...


Today's post is going to be a little lite on code, but I thought this just to cool to pass up (and it's been a few years since it was mentioned on Coding4Fun).

Today's post come to us from Guy Smith-Ferrier, Mind Control Your Computer In C#

This coming Wednesday (22nd June 2011) and next Friday (1st July 2011) I will presenting a new session at VBUG Bristol and Fest '11 respectively:-

  • Mind Control Your Computer In C#
    No, really. This isn't some clever session title. I'm really talking about controlling your computer with your mind. I'm not making this stuff up. This is real. Today. You put on a headset, you use a C# SDK and you control your computer with your thoughts. Yes, you are reading this right - you mind control your computer. It is a reality and it is possible today. Once you've gotten over your disbelief consider the applications. Applications for the physically impaired alone are a whole revolution. Not to mention the possibilities for gaming. Want to be shocked and amazed ? Come and see this session.

This session uses the Emotiv EPOC neuroheadset to control a PC by thought. I am delighted that I live in a world where it is possible to do this and where it is within an individual's affordable price range.

Yes, I know that by now his sessions are past, and that his slides and source might not yet be available (in chatting with Guy, the slides wouldn't help much as his sessions are very demo/code heavy anyway), but still the thought of using C# or other .Net language to interface with this is to fun to skip.


So what is a coder to do? Well there's the EmotivSharp project (which Guy is not using, he's working closer to the metal, but until his code is available, we've got this)...

This C# project implements the SDK for the EPOC Headset by - This has a basic GUI that displays "some basic" data coming from the EPOC Headset or EmoComposer.

Here's a snap from the BrainYesNo sample. Note: This will not execute unless you have an EPOC Headset...


void myEmotivPower_NewCognitivEvent(EmotivSharp.EmotivPower.BaseData.CognitivState.CognitivData CognitivEvent_Data)
    if (CognitivEvent_Data.myCognitivAction == typeCogYes)
            fontYes = (int)CognitivEvent_Data.actionPower;
            G = (int)CognitivEvent_Data.actionPower+150;
    if (CognitivEvent_Data.myCognitivAction == typeCogNo)
            fontNO = (int)CognitivEvent_Data.actionPower;
            R = (int)CognitivEvent_Data.actionPower+150;

How cool is catching 'NewCognitivEvent?"


If you're looking for hardware the cements your geek'ness for the year, this is calling out to you. Can you hear it? Or is that whisper just in your mind... Smiley


Here’s a few more links you might find interesting:

The Discussion

  • User profile image

    Was lucky enough to catch one of Guys' sessions at #Fest11 last week.  It looks as though we now have a reasonably cost efective way to control things using thought!    Wow! 

    (Just let that sink in)

    It was great to see it in action (I tried to take a photo showing Guy in 'concentration mode' but sadly it was too blurry to use).

    My immediate thoughts (no pun intended) were of how this might be of value to the severely disabled.  It must now only be a matter of time before these things are ready for the mainstream?

    On a side note I envy Guy as he always seems to have the latest gadgets at his finger tips ...

    Finally - a shout out to the #Fest organisers who put on a great variety of speakers this year!

  • User profile image
    Guy SmithFerrier

    It is indeed an amazing piece of kit.

    I recently did an experiment of recording my emotions whilst listening to two different pieces of live music (this is a demo I can't do in a live presentation because I cannot will myself to feel a specific emotion). You can read about it at


  • User profile image
    Guy SmithFerrier

    Hi Ian,

    (#Fest11 was indeed great :-)).

    You are absolutely right - people are already using this to help the disabled. There is a great video of Cora using the "Free" flying game that I briefly mentioned:


  • User profile image

    Unfortunately the sensors on that thing are crap like all others of this kind.

    The companies making them are too cheap on the hardware. The only thing they need to do i use good hardware and this will become a success.

    Not all areas you need access to are on the surface off the brain so the sensors need to be good enough to sense what's happening inside the brain.

    If they bothered to make some research and listen to the results they would know this already.

    The companies are destroying for themselves by being cheap.
    Not only that, they are also giving such products a bad reputation So future products of this kind that might actually use the right hardware will not sell as good as they otherwise would have.

    Being cheap should be illegal !

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