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Video game technology aids woman in speech recovery


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A woman who had lost her ability to speak due to a stroke is now finding her voice again with the help of video game technology. Speech Graphics, a company specializing in facial animation software, teamed up with researchers from UC San Francisco and UC Berkeley to develop a brain-computer interface that can restore communication for paralyzed individuals. The team implanted a thin rectangle of electrodes near the part of the woman’s brain responsible for speech, decoding her brain signals and transmitting them to computers. Through artificial intelligence algorithms, the computers were trained to interpret her brain activity and reproduce a vocabulary of over 1,000 words based on her pre-stroke voice recordings. The AI technology also utilized Speech Graphics’ facial animation tech to create an avatar that simulated the woman’s individual facial muscles and expressions.

While this achievement is still in the proof-of-concept stage, it has generated hope that this technology could soon benefit many others. The success of the all-rounded avatar demonstrates the potential for the brain-computer interface to help paralyzed individuals regain their ability to communicate. By combining advanced AI algorithms, electrode implants, and facial animation technology, this innovative approach holds promise for improving the quality of life for people with speech impairments. This collaboration between Speech Graphics and the research institutions showcases the diverse applications of video game technology, leveraging its capabilities beyond entertainment and into the realm of healthcare and rehabilitation.

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