Thursday, 9 December 2004

Simply Brilliant

Today's Brain Link : From The Australian :
A Brain scientist has teamed up with electronics wizards to design a system for giving dozy drivers a wake-up call.

The idea is to monitor telltale brainwaves for signs of sleepiness and inattention and then alert a flagging driver. "The system could turn on the radio or spray water on the driver's face -- who knows," joked Sara Lal, a neuroscientist with the University of Technology, Sydney.
Along with colleagues at Melbourne University and Sydney-based rail safety firm Integrated Vigilance Systems, Dr Lal has just received more than $500,000 to refine the approach. Their work with the electrical activity of the brain fits neatly with technology pioneered at the Australian National University in Canberra. That prototype system is based on computerised face recognition, which tracks and monitors drivers, using dashboard cameras.
As a passenger, I can still remember having to take the wheel when the driver fell asleep about 20 years ago. This is a simple idea that could save hundreds of lives in Australia in just a few years, and Lord only knows how many worldwide. I'm just kicking myself for not having thought of it before Sara Lal did. Good on her.

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