MindFlix lets you control Netflix with your thoughts

Remember the days when you actually had to get up and manually change the TV channel?

Yeah, me neither. But I do know that remote controls revolutionized TV watching. And now Netflix enigineers have developed a way to ensure that TV viewers don't even have to lift a remote control anymore by creating a headband that lets you navigate Netflix with your brain. But how does it work?

In IT Blogwatch, we think about it.

So what exactly is going on? Tyler Lee has the background:

The folks at Netflix have an annual “Hack Day” in which employees...come up with all kinds of wacky ideas. For example we saw the creation of a VR video store back in 2016...This year we are looking at mind control.
...
Netflix employees...have put together something called MindFlix...this is a Muse EEG-detecting headband that is worn on the person’s head, and...whenever the person moves their head up or down or side to side, it will let them control Netflix’s interface.

That sounds like a lazy person's dream come true. But how does it work? Hugh Langley explains:

The 'Mindflix' band uses electroencephalography waves to read electrical brain activity, and...we can see [that]...not only can the wearer move their head to navigate menus, but also start a show by simply thinking "play."

Is there a need for this, though? And will it ever actually be available to the public? Justin Diaz has the details:

The hardware is obviously just a proof of concept...created by Netflix engineers to showcase the possibilities of various technology, but...it also displays that there is a possibility for something to help anyone out there who is tired of reaching across the couch to grab the remote...or whatever other device you’re using to navigate your Netflix interface...that there is a way to enjoy Netflix without having to physically move. While it may not be something that is actually going to be incorporated into the Netflix service, it is a cool result to come out of the Hack Day.

About Hack Day -- anything else worth mentioning from that? Janko Roettgers thinks so:

Other projects...included a Christmas sweater capable of spelling out messages, “Stranger Things” style, a donation splash page that would allow viewers to open their wallets for charities after watching documentaries...a social viewing experience for customers with multiple Netflix accounts and a “Stranger Things” video game.

So what do you think -- should MindFlix actually become a thing? We don't know, but Suzannah Weiss seems like she might like one:

It maybe not be the most needed technological innovation of our time, but...it just may be one of the coolest.

Anything else we need to know? Not really, but you can watch the MindFlix video below:

Copyright © 2017 IDG Communications, Inc.

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