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AlterEgo may be used to help those with memory problems or who have lost the ability to speak | Photo source MIT Media Lab

An AI-wearable that knows what you’re thinking

Healthcare & Wellbeing

AlterEgo can detect what you say when talking to yourself, even when you’re not moving your mouth

Spotted: A device called AlterEgo could change the way people communicate, without having to hear a spoken word. Created by a 24-year-old PhD candidate from MIT, this wearable device can detect what you say, even when you are talking to yourself and not moving your mouth. It may be used to help those with memory problems or people who have lost the ability to speak.   

AlterEgo works by detecting the neuromuscular signals sent by the brain to the vocal cords. The device reads these signals and AI turns them into words. The speaker can hear the AI-generated responses through a tiny microphone that conducts sound through the bones of the skull and ear. Responses can also be read out loud through artificial voice technology.  

The device’s creator, Arnav Kapur, is in the process of testing it on patients in hospitals and rehabilitation centres who have lost their ability to speak. Kapur has applied for a patent and has plans to develop AlterEgo into a commercial device.

Springwise has spotted other AI-driven innovations that integrate with brain activity to help those with disabilities, including a device that aims to give people with quadriplegia control over devices with their thoughts.

Email: alterego@media.mit.edu

Website: media.mit.edu/alterego

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