We are accustomed to hearing about new SF technologies developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers, but the newest, called "AlterEgo", is by far the most impressive. Using a device mounted on the user's face that receives neuromuscular signals, AlterEgo can "read" the words the user says in mind. Thus, the device can be connected to a virtual assistant and can perform various functions without direct voice commands and without pressing any buttons
The technology is demonstrated by MIT using a clip in which the AlterEgo user uses the device to navigate the menus of a multimedia system, just thinking about the functions like "down", "up", "open" to start an application. Also, the system can offer voice feedback back through headphones that use microvibrations to guide the sound through the bone directly to the eardrum, so the ears are able to hear the surrounding sound
Another method by which technology is demonstrated is to keep the total of a shopping list and report it at the end, the user just adding the price of each product to the price. Last but not least, the system is presented as doing something "bad", ie cheating in a logic game where the player reports the moves made by the opponent and the device uses the A.I. to provide optimal strategies for the following moves
Of course, the AlterEgo is just a prototype, and a separate computer is needed to take orders, process them, and then provide answers or take action. Importantly, technology is working, MIT introducing it as a way in which the perception and speed of human thinking is expanded, providing a non-intrusive fusion of man and technology. Since AlterEgo is built using existing technology, it will probably not take long until a company attempts to sell such a device, perhaps with a minimalist design.