Basic Instincts: Neural Impulse Actuator in Action
After becoming a public company OCZ Technology has been growing really rapidly. This year the company’s exposition at CeBIT was not focused on memory modules, but a wide product array was demonstrated. After the IPO, OCZ truly became a technology, not just a memory company.
OCZ Technology Group showed off latest power supply units by PC Power and Cooling, Hypersonic Aviator notebooks, OCZ flash and random access memory products, cooling solutions and gaming gear. The most impressive demo was, of course, NIA, or Neural Impulse Actuator.
In fact, OCZ demonstrated NIA for the first time at CeBIT 2007 promising to start shipments of the device as early as in late 2007. Unfortunately, the company has not succeeded in finalizing the device last year and Neural Impulse Actuator reached mass production only a few days ago. But the delay was reasonable: the NIA has evolved dramatically.
The NIA is not a replacement for a mouse but rather a pioneering new peripheral designed to provide an immersive experience for gamers. The NIA is the first commercially available BCI (brain-computer interface) specifically for PC gamers.
The commands are easily assigned with the NIA’s user-friendly software and are calibrated based on the individual’s physiology and personal preferences. Each of the Actuator’s signals can be assigned to a specific keystroke on the keyboard or a mouse button; consequentially, gamers can run, jump, and fire faster all without “lifting a finger.” Because the NIA converts EEG (electroencephalograph) signals into specified keystrokes, the device can be used with any software. Upon proper configuration, the NIA will allow users to control PC games without the use of a keyboard and minimal use of a mouse.
The final version of the NIA uses a sleek, metal housing, a USB 2.0 interface, a streamlined headband with carbon interface sensors, and user-friendly software. Unfortunately, exact pricing of NIA is not known.