US military pours millions into ‘EEG telepathy’

I get the feeling that DARPA, the American military research agency, only ever select their research projects from sci-fi comics.

Wired reports that their latest multi-million dollar project is to create an EEG-based ‘telepathy’ communication system for the battlefield solder:

Forget the battlefield radios, the combat PDAs or even infantry hand signals. When the soldiers of the future want to communicate, they’ll read each other’s minds.

At least, that’s the hope of researchers at the Pentagon’s mad-science division Darpa. The agency’s budget for the next fiscal year includes $4 million to start up a program called Silent Talk. The goal is to “allow user-to-user communication on the battlefield without the use of vocalized speech through analysis of neural signals.” That’s on top of the $4 million the Army handed out last year to the University of California to investigate the potential for computer-mediated telepathy.

Before being vocalized, speech exists as word-specific neural signals in the mind. Darpa wants to develop technology that would detect these signals of “pre-speech,” analyze them, and then transmit the statement to an intended interlocutor. Darpa plans to use EEG to read the brain waves. It’s a technique they’re also testing in a project to devise mind-reading binoculars that alert soldiers to threats faster the conscious mind can process them.

It’s all getting a bit Rogue Trooper isn’t it?

Link to Wired on DARPA barmyness.


  1. Posted May 14, 2009 at 11:42 pm | Permalink

    “I get the feeling that DARPA, the American military research agency, only ever select their research projects from sci-fi comics.”
    You’re only noticing this now. These are the same yahoos who planned a multi-billion dollar missile defense named “Star Wars”.

  2. Posted May 15, 2009 at 12:52 am | Permalink

    Watch Jon Ronson’s Crazy Rulers of the World (2004), even more bizzare. Click link above for info.

  3. Posted May 15, 2009 at 2:31 am | Permalink

    Good lord–this is reminding me of the mind control experiments conducted by the CIA. When do these people get a grip?

  4. John Allman
    Posted May 18, 2009 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    This is far from science fiction. I met on Tuesday last (12 May 2009) with Colonel John B Alexander, who confirmed that the claims I made in my paper to the 5th European Symposium on Non-Lethal Weaopons the previous day were accurate, for Frey Effect voice transmission, target tracking, EEG telemetry and thought inference capabilities.
    See for the above-mentioned paper.

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