A brainwave development in human-computer interaction has allowed four patients with Motor-Neurone Disease, more commonly known as ALS thanks to ice-wielding dipshits, to communicate for the first time in years. And one of them has used the technique to resolutely refuse permission for his daughter to marry her boyfriend.
The study, carried out at the Wyss Center in Switzerland, involved four patients who are completely "locked in" - in other words, they're paralysed to the point that they can't even move their eyes. Until now, this has left them no way to communicate with their carers and families, but the new technique uses blood oxygen levels to get answers to yes or no questions. It's not foolproof - the answers are accurate about 70% of the time - but to ensure they were understanding correctly, the researchers asked the same questions many times.
When asked if his daughter could wed her boyfriend Mario, 61-year-old Patient B said NO a damning nine times out of ten. His daughter, who probably wishes she'd never asked, is presumably now going to have to borrow the new system to ask her dad in yes/no format what's so wrong with Mario. Maybe he's more of a Luigi man.
There was some positive news from the study (aside from the scientific breakthrough angle, obviously): when asked over and over again whether they were happy - possibly in increasing tones of incredulity - the patients all responded with a resounding YES. In fairness, not having to talk to other humans sounds kind of cheering to us, too. [Yahoo]
Image: Wyss Center