No, not just neuroimaging. There's an actual implant, and the brain adapts to it, with information coming out. As far as I know, this is the first neurosilicate interface. (There have been siliconeural stimulators, but that hasn't involved any information transfer.) I believe this is the first device to get information directly from the brain.
So far, two incapacitated people have received the implants. This gave them the power to control a cursor on a computer screen by thinking about moving parts of their body. By pointing the cursor at different icons, the patients could make the computer voice phrases such as "I'm thirsty" or "Please turn off the light". "If you can run a computer, you can talk to the world," says Roy Bakay of Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, whose team developed the implants. The implants consist of two hollow glass cones, no bigger than the tip of a ballpoint pen, placed into the brain's motor cortex, which controls body movements. The glass cones are laced with neurotrophic chemicals extracted from the patients' own knees. These
Vingean, isn't it? As far as I can tell nothing is being "decoded", so there isn't any complex information tranfer, or two-way transfer. It is a long way from here to semantic telepathy. Still, this is an astonishing proof-of-concept.
Crude. Blunt. Unthinking. But we are now officially living in the age of implants and computer telepathy.
-- email@example.com Eliezer S. Yudkowsky http://pobox.com/~sentience/AI_design.temp.html http://pobox.com/~sentience/sing_analysis.html Disclaimer: Unless otherwise specified, I'm not telling you everything I think I know.