NeuroSky, chaired by Stanley Yang, is a company based in San Jose, California, United States. Their technology is an example of a "brain-computer interface".
Electroencephalography uses electrodes attached to the head to read the output of brain signals, small electrical neural impulses generated by thought and mental state.
Neurosky has publicly demonstrated two emotions reading with their brainwave sensors. Attention meters is a reading of how attentive the user is feeling. Meditation meter is a reading of how relaxed the user is feeling. They are two independent readings, so the user could for example be attentive and meditative at the same time. Other emotions, including anxiety and drowsiness were also in the work. Unlike competing products, it can't detect conscious thoughts or and treats facial expressions as a noise, but it comes at a much cheaper price.
NeuroSky has created a game to demonstrate their product, which allows players to push objects such as cars or furniture by concentrating on them (attention), and to levitate objects by relaxing (meditation). Movement and view control would still be done using conventional game controls.
NeuroSky does not market directly to the public (unless they want to buy the whole SDK for more than a thousand dollars). Instead they license their technology, or sell their headsets, to other companies to incorporate into that company's products. It is likely to be integrated into toys or other devices and not just as a PC peripheral. Companies which have publicly announced they are working with NeuroSky include Sega Toys, Square Enix, Nokia and Musinaut.
Neurosky's hardware, the Think-Gear module, uses their patented dry-active sensor technology to read the brain signals. The electrodes of standard medical electroencephalography use a conductive gel to facilitate the reading of the signals. Dry-active sensor technology does not need such a gel and unlike medical EEG or Emotiv's headset, which both use many electrodes, NeuroSky only uses one. This makes headsets based on NeuroSky technology very low cost, and easy to put on.
In addition to their "Think-Gear" line, Neurosky are also working on a more advanced version of their headset, named "Project Millennia" (Emotiv's competing product was named "Project Epoc").
Project Millennia includes head and eye tracking plus stereo sound, in addition to the EEG. Head tracking will be by Memsic accelerometers, and eye tracking will done with Eye-Com's eye tracking glasses. This will give the headset some of the same abilities as Emotiv's competing product which also features head and eye tracking, but with gyros and EEG.
There are three main commercial-competitors in this area (expected launch date mentioned in brackets) which are going to launch such devices primarily for gaming- and PC-users:
- Neural Impulse Actuator (July, 2008) - $149 or less
- Emotiv Systems (Christmas/Holiday Season, 2008) - $299 or less
- NeuroSky (Not Declared)
- Mindball - Available - The table can be rented for approximately $20,000 to groups.