back to article Boffins take REMOTE CONTROL of HUMAN HAND

Now that pacemakers are to be loaded with firewalls and bionic-man body parts are appearing on production lines, the concept of body hacking has become a spooky possibility. Researchers in Japan have begun to try to teach people how to play instruments by remotely controlling their hands. Developed by the University of Tokyo …


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  1. John Robson Silver badge

    Mavis Beacon teaches

    Touch Typing, with additional thought control module...

  2. NomNomNom


    this would be very handy

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    New tech; Milatary use - maybe, Home use - possible, porn industry - oh yeah

    Wondering were this will be used first and can't help but think that the porn industry will be pioneering it.

    1. dssf

      In good hands with pawl state...

      Don't let this fall into the wrong hands. If anti-protologic forces forecept their way into the annals of proctology, the sheer shear force to be... en(d)light(e)ning, shocking, jarring.

      On the electronic, umm OTHER hand, it might improve birdie-flipping, break-dancing competitions, and even help people in the loo. Train operators and airplane pilots might get a better hand or better grip on, well, operations in driver seat and in the cockpit. Might bionically change the way some US sports are played.

      Or, maybe it can help improve that life-threatening chicken scratch some doctors still pen...

  4. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

    May I

    be the first to welcome our digit manipulating Borg overlords?

  5. Alan Bourke

    Now Captain Cyborg can toss himself off ..

    ... and it'll feel like someone else doing it.

  6. Ru
    Thumb Up


    Looks like the final barriers to entry into the pop charts are finally coming down. Autotune and lipsyncing work for singers, sure... now the whole band can have utterly synthetic talent!

  7. NukEvil
    Thumb Up

    I know what I'd use it for...

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Quit hitting yourself.

    Thumbs up because, well...

  8. Anonymous Coward

    the pron makers

    I bet the pron industry will be the first to incorporate an adaptor into a skin flick to regulate the pace of a knuckle shuffle to synchronise with the on-screen action!!

    1. Citizen Kaned

      already done.

      ive seen some weird gadgets for doing this already available. ones for ladies and men!

      1. Graham Marsden
        Thumb Up

        @already done

        Yep, the Japanese have produced a "hand on a stand" which moves up and down in synchronisation with the movements of the hand of a young lady on a DVD...!

  9. Anonymous Coward


    Can I make my lusers slap themselves silly?

  10. Milo Minderbinder


    Shades of Dr. Strangelove?

    <----- Director's megaphone, obviously.

  11. Ralthor

    The gibson....

    .... will be was hacked!

  12. Kyriacos Sakkas

    I am amused

    but others might not be. That first photo is giving the finger in a few body language "dialects".

  13. John Savard

    My Understanding

    From what the article says, it appears that the device sort of... suggests... the correct motions of the hand, but the recipient still has to voluntarily make those motions. However, it's "pushy" enough both to communicate the precise required motions effectively... and for the experience to be somewhat uncomfortable.

    Although this seems to mean it is not directly applicable to reattaching limbs and the like, it is still an interesting and useful technology.

    1. Filippo Silver badge

      Re: My Understanding

      From what I gather, no, the device really makes the fingers move. It just doesn't make them exert much force, so it can't make them pinch a string, but it can make them position anywhere.

  14. Fogcat
    Thumb Up

    It's odd

    I've had tests on nerve conduction speeds which involved an electrode round my upper arm and it was very very weird to sit there watching my fingers twitch on their own. That was weird enough, no wonder the volunteers described it as unpleasant!

    (thumbs up for twitching digits)

    1. anarchic-teapot


      I also remember similar tests as unpleasant, but then I'm apparently on the sensitive side of the norm for that sort of thing and the nice lady was using quite strong electric impulses. It stung a bit, but It's mostly the realisation that control of part of your body has been taken away that's scary (until the neurologist, apologising profusely, jabs the last needle into your hand because the last test has to be made straight into the muscle).

      Presumably a little reminder as to which finger to use wouldn't be quite as bad since the current would be lower. I'd give it a try, though. I'll get my bass.

    2. VeganVegan

      Unpleasant indeed

      The spouse has been controlling my whole body for years to do all sorts of chores, no electrodes required.

  15. ian 22

    Typically Japanese

    Training in Japan is very much like this in many instances. Sensei will literally take you by the hand and move you through the paces. When you can reproduce his moves perfectly, you graduate to the next level. No thought/creativity is required (or desired, really).

    Parents do not ask "what did you learn in school today"? Rather they ask "did you listen to the teacher"?

  16. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Stealthy Wolves are Anonymous and Legion

    "Boffins take REMOTE CONTROL of HUMAN HAND" ..... Caleb Cox.

    Would that also be Virtual Remote Control of Games of Thrones Hands, CC?

    That takes one into Holy Grail Immaculate Human Terrain Team Territory. And a Phorm and Force of Interest to more than just one wily Fox ....... "Dr Fox said the re-organisation - in which a new joint force command will be created to oversee and integrate areas such as cyber warfare and military intelligence - " .....

    Control Words, Power World Spaces is NEUKlearer HyperRadioProActive IT in its RAW Core Ore Lode State ...... which is why Transparent Open Source Communication Avenues are important in Order to Enable Blitzing of All Open and Free Markets, with Showers of Fabulous Gifts for Advanced Working Knowledge of the System that Supports and Tends to your Needs with their Feeds and Seeds for Future New Growth, which is surely the Raison D'etre of the Status Quo rather than there being the Presence of an Active Anti-Competitive Embargo on ITs Future Development Programs.

    The Virtual Machine becomes the Voice of Mankind?:-) Or Mankind voicing itself through Virtual Machinery/Digital Infrastructure/Binary Networks InterNetworking?

    1. Elmer Phud

      Byte-ing the hand with feeds in it

      "The Virtual Machine becomes the Voice of Mankind?:-) Or Mankind voicing itself through Virtual Machinery/Digital Infrastructure/Binary Networks InterNetworking?"

      Remote operation of a hand? - nothing new. A certain Mr Maradona will testify that us mere mortals are only just beginning to catch up.

      Maybe we'll have some input with the new gods this time.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    "although if I could be programmed to get all Satriani"

    "although if I could be programmed to get all Malmsteen"

    There, fixed it for you.

  18. Thomas 4

    Modern technology, eh?

    Now script kiddies from the latest hacking cult can attack our bodies...

    "Sorry I'm disappointing you, love. I think my crotch is being DDoS'ed by Lulzec."

  19. Adam Foxton

    Given that it was shown that frogs legs

    will twitch if zapped with 'leccy, would that mean you could remote control a dead body with this tech (scaled up and connected to a more complex control array)?

    I'm just asking because... you know... with that and an wireless connection you've got Zombies.

  20. Chronos

    I'm surprised nobody has said it.

    "Is this Petersen's arm? I've got the arm of a Danish moron."

    Shame on you all.

  21. Lloyd

    Is this how the oil companies were controlling Bush?

    And is that why he always looks so wooden?

  22. John 62

    Dance, puppet, DANCE!


  23. David Harrison 1

    They won't want a hand from me.

    I know where it's been and I'm not afraid to tell them.

  24. Redbaron


    was doing this sort of thing YEARS ago

  25. Robert E A Harvey


    Isn't a belt worn round a wrist normally called a Strap?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Music for dummies like me

    - I can play guitar like Jimi Hendrix!

    - Wow, you couldn't play CD for a Turner Prize yesterday, how did you learn so fast?

    - Huh... VNC.

    Maybe some artists can use the method to properly lip sync on stage as well. Just make sure you don't stream them over Virgin Media after 9pm or they might get throttled.

  27. Solomon Grundy
    Thumb Up

    Dead Bodies

    Will it work on dead bodies? That would be great, and the first step toward by own PossessedBand. Book now for parties!

  28. Clive Galway

    Do it right, FFS

    Sod non-invasive techniques, what this project needs is a rectally located input device.

    Human glove-puppet!

  29. Anonymous Coward

    o rly?

    the Stranger? or the Manchurian hand-job?

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