Scan Your Brain at Home With New Device

Have you ever wondered about your brain activity during the course of the day? Science fiction writer Philip K. Dick certainly did; that's why he wrote about things like the cephalochromoscope, a consumer product that let you play games with your own brain patterns, in his 1977 book A Scanner Darkly.

Well, thanks to the hard-working folks at Hitachi, you can nowindulge your curiosity about your own brain patterns - for real. Their new lightweight, rechargeable battery-operated brain scanner lets you use optical topography technology to actually look at your own brain activity.

The Hitachi system consists of a 14 ounce headset and a 1 pound six ounce belt-worn controller. The scanning technique makes use of the fact that blood flow increases to areas of the brain where neurons are firing (a sign of brain activity). Eight small lasers embedded in the headset fire harmless near-infrared rays into your brain. Photodiode sensors (also on the surface of the headset) convert the reflected light into electrical signals, which are relayed to the controller.

Helpful Hitachi looks ahead to a bright future in which neuromarketers (advertisers who study live brain data to create more compelling ads) could at last have access to real-time customer brain data. That way, they could construct commercials or other forms of advertisement that really grab consumers - by the brains.

The device could also have a wide variety of consumer uses, which Philip K. Dick hinted at in his book.

"Your cephalochromoscope that cost you nine hundred dollars, that you always turn on and play when you get home - Ernie and Barris were babbling away about it...
(Read more about the cephscope)

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Thanks to Pink Tentacle for this one.

(This Science Fiction in the News story used with permission from Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction.)