Biofeedback Toys: Amazing Toys That Are Powered By Your Thoughts and Emotions - Wirelessly

by Jerrico_Usher

Imagine being able to wear a pair of mock cat ears that actually react to your brainwave patterns. In other words, your emotions and thoughts cause them to react!

Cat's are marvelous creatures. One thing I really love about them is their ears. They show a great deal of emotion and thought processes (body language) in their ears. I once wondered what people would be like if they too had the same emotional ears as cats.

My closure came when I saw Avatar the movie with the people cat looking creatures and wow did they show how it would look if people had ears that reacted to emotions like a cat. Brilliant job Mr. Cameron!

In this article I'm going to give you the 4-1-1 on how biofeedback technology works and tell you about a ground breaking use of this technology to create human worn cat ears that react like cats do, a toy called the Jedi Force Trainer, and MindFlex's Intriguing telekinesis (mimicking) game!

Are these devices going to be responsible for unlocking and training us to move objects with our minds later without any head gear? Who knows, but the idea is fascinating isn't it?

_____________________________________________________________

Force Trainer Game
Force Trainer Game

Star Wars "Force" Trainer: The REAL LIFE "Use The Force" Technology

Two amazing toys came out a few years ago. One was the Star Wars "Force" Trainer. This is a toy that uses a remote/wireless biofeedback headset (looks a lot like a PC headset with mic only the microphone is pushed against your forehead to read your thought patterns in concert with two other pieces) and a unit that's made up of a tube and a ball.

A fan inside the device is controlled (turned on/off and various degrees of power) by your thoughts. You can stare and concentrate at the ball (or just produce imagery that creates certain brain states/emotions) and like magic the ball starts to float, fluctuating as your thoughts and focus wanes and fluctuates. It's actually quite simple to use it but the technology is very complex behind the scenes. To put it simply, you just concentrate or relax, those two at varying degrees makes the ball float... (see the videos below).

The idea is the remote headgear reads your brain wave patterns then reports that to the remote tube piece via wireless transmission and when you trigger certain states (theta, beta, alpha, Gama, etc...) the fan comes on thus floating the ball.

_____________________________________________________________

You Can Try To Relax or Concentrate And The Ball Floats, But Visualizing Can Make it Float Up And Down More Uniquely

The speed of the fan is dependent on certain brain states so you have to learn how to control your thoughts and visualizations to provoke emotions that help you keep your mind in a certain state. If you ask me this is a precursor to training human beings to do telepathy/telekinesis... in a hundred years who knows what exercising your brain like this will trigger in our evolution of psychic skills :)

Force Trainer In Action

Get The Force Trainer On Amazon:

Star Wars Science - Force Trainer
Uncle Milton
Only $129.99

MindFlex's Cooler Version Of The Same Technology

I'm not sure which one came out first but the Mindflex Game is even cooler. Sure it doesn't have the Star Wars Branding or cool phrasology like "using the force"- but it's ten times more fun than the other toy. The other toy is more like a training game for this one if you ask me.

It has the same fan/ball concept but there is no tube, no limitations around the ball, it floats freestyle inside a round court (see image). The concept works the same but the fan itself moves creating more leverage for the ball to move around. Inside the court there is optional courses you can attach and using tricky maneuvering you can actually move the ball all around the toy and even push it through hoops and tubes!

As the kid in the video below showing you how it works demonstrates, there is a knob that you can turn to change the angle of the fan, but the ball floating up just enough to go through the hoops/tubes, is all skill baby!

You will really feel like you are telekinetic (can move objects with your mind) after trying this out, it's simply amazing! I feel magic just watching the videos and seeing the ball float!

Kid Explains The Powerful MindFlex Toy and Demonstrates It's Use

When The Adults Couldn't Relax Their Mind Enough To Make The Ball Float, This Baby Could!

...and there's always people hacking technology these days to show more varied use of it :)

Get MindFlex Classic On Amazon:

Mindflex Game
Mattel
Only $79.99

MindFlex Dual - Two Player Version (really cool)

Mindflex Duel Game
Mattel
Only $99.99

MindFlex Duel In Action

How Bio-Feedback Toys Work

As you move through the brain states you create a certain frequency of brain wave patterns that can be read by the device and interpreted. Although the toy manufacturers simplify this by stating you just need to do two simple things- concentrate or relax, there are many more levels between and that's where you can create some real magic. It's like a video game. One person with lots of skills can do things in the game an inexperienced player would think was magical- but it's just focus and control.

The trick is to maintain a specific frequency by controlling your emotions and thoughts. As you think your brain responds to how you feel, loosely put, your emotions are a byproduct of your thoughts and cause the brain to release chemicals. These chemicals become emotions incarnate (to put it succinctly). The whole thing causes your brainwaves to fluctuate.

For example, when you're angry your in one frequency (tense/concentrated), and when your happy your in another (relaxed). This is an extreme set of cases as the fluctuations are often highly varied, but when you focus on something you can create a sort of macro that triggers an emotion.

Think of how you feel when you see a picture of someone you like and how you feel when you see a picture of someone you don't like. The feelings, unless something changes in the associations created with those people, tend to be the same or in the same ballpark.

Your thoughts generally cause your brainwave patterns to fluctuate widely and instantly but if you can figure out what thoughts cause you to feel certain ways you can essentially cause yourself to stay in a certain state. These biofeedback toys are great for teaching yourself to focus, meditate, and move a ball without touching it or anything (but wireless airwaves) that's touching it. As you saw in the "shocking" video above, someone can hack this device into a torture device (or is it learning to relax so you don't get shocked, device?).

It's not easy to maintain focus to the point where you can control the ball at first but in time you become expert. The kid in the previous video seems to be able to float the ball and drop it with relative ease. I'm thinking that this has to make some kind of changes in your brain and evolve the way you think so I think it has mental health/focus benefits.

Thoughts Provoke Brainwave Changes

_____________________________________________________________

The brilliance of this is that although we all have our individual emotional patterns, thoughts create completely different patterns as well- i.e. you and a friend, even on the same page, will interpret emotionally the same words, thoughts, imagery etc... differently. The "translator" is based on basic brain states that we all experience so it's not a matter of learning a new code (like learning to type) but rather to skillfully navigate your emotions to generate or hold brain states.

So the "training" process consists not of a standard set of language like a keyboard that anyone can use to communicate in their own way. Rather an idea of a few basic emotions and practicing so those thoughts, those images in your head you focus on, and your interpretations of all of these allow you to essentially "adapt" to your own version and triggers for creating those brainwave patterns.

Although in the end we all tend to play the game the same on the surface, we are all actually playing it differently. It's very personal because the way we think, interpret, and imagine things are all unique to each person.

Now that you have a good idea of how the technology works and some of neurowear's predecessors, let's talk about the coolest biofeedback device to come out since the Mindflex (still the best, but conceptually I love the ears more)- the human cat ears that show your emotions without you having to do anything but go about your day. You can learn to provoke specific movements through visualization and focus and creating imagery that acts like a button- so to speak.

Neurowear Headset

Neurowear
Neurowear

Neurowear In Action

How Purrrrrrfect, The First Social Self Contained "Neuro-Communication Device"

Neurowear cat ears are cool, simple, and I'm guessing a lot easier to control than the other games. If you master the other biofeedback games this should be a snap because they use the same concepts just themed differently.

As you saw in the video she was able to move just one of the ears independently! That- I'm sure isn't as easy as it looks. This is a fun toy and a big attention getter. How cool would it be to put a set on your baby as you walk around with her in your arm (2-3 years of age)? people would really think it was adorable!

I can see this as a therapeutic tool as well. Imagine your trying to have a cordial conversation with someone but you can't tell when the other person is feeling annoyed or unnerved. Just have you both wear a pair and the ears will tell all! It makes for a great Halloween accessory too!

Get NeuroWear On Amazon:

Necomimi Brainwave Cat Ears
Neurowear
Only $35.98

Conclusion

In the coming years this budding new technology, one that's just scratched the surface even as cool as it seems to us now, will evolve into some amazing concepts. They could easily integrate more movements, consolidated (programmed) movements to correspond in several movements with an emotion/brain state change, and so on.

The potential is amazing. Between the Wii, Kinetic, and biofeedback technologies (and of course the powerful iPhone concepts) the future looks exciting and intriguing. My minds exploding I don't know about you.

Thank you for reading!

Comments are very welcome! If you know of any other biofeedback devices like these please comment and include a link!

Updated: 08/26/2012, Jerrico_Usher
 
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?
1

Comments


   Login

You might also like

MAKE Magazine... Can You Say Geekier and Happier?

Find out why MAKE magazine makes even a non-geek drool... It has so many incr...

The REAL Star Wars Light Saber Is Here And It's Legal To Own F...

The leisons of Star Wars fans will be glad to know that a real light saber de...


Disclosure: This page generates income for authors based on affiliate relationships with our partners, including Amazon, Google and others.
Loading ...
Error!