OCZ Neural Impulse Actuator On Linux?
Written by Michael Larabel in Hardware on 17 March 2008 at 08:06 PM EDT. 3 Comments
Earlier this month at CeBIT, OCZ Technology had announced its Neural Impulse Actuator (NIA) entered mass production (press release). OCZ's Neural Impulse Actuator is the first Brain Computer Interface (BCI) designed for gamers on the consumer market. The NIA band is worn around the head and is able to convert electroencephalograph signals into keystrokes/mouse clicks and connects via USB 2.0. The Neural Impulse Actuator was first covered on Phoronix during Computex Taipei 2007. While the NIA is solely marketed for gamers, it's been reported that with some training this "neural-controlled mouse" can be used for basic desktop usage as well.


With the OCZ Neural Impulse Actuator now in mass production, we checked with OCZ Technology to see whether they intend to support this first product of its kind on Linux. Lisa Gregersen, an OCZ marketing representative, has informed us that porting their NIA driver and software to Linux isn't on their immediate road-map right now, but it may come in the future. As this product is heavily weighted for gamers, OCZ may consider adding the Linux support once the Linux gaming market has grown. However, that's not to say the Linux community won't come up with their own NIA driver or cleanly reverse-engineer the Windows OCZ software. When we hear any other information regarding the OCZ NIA and Linux, we'll be sure to pass it along. By the time there is hopefully the official Linux support, the Neural Impulse Actuator may drop in price too (right now its price-tag is ~$300 USD).
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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