The high tech activation, now a hallmark of Deakin’s Open Days, took a scalextric race track and replaced the handheld controllers with brain-computer interface (BCI) technology, allowing prospective students to control the cars with the power of their mind. The harder each player concentrated, the faster their car made it around the track.
Over the Geelong and Burwood events, hundreds of players got a chance to experience the technology, while thousands more watched on in amazement and disbelief.
BCI technology is currently being researched in Deakin’s Cognitive Neuroscience Unit. The idea of allowing a person’s brain impulses to control a physical object outside of their body offers great promise in many fields including mobility for disabled and visually impaired people.
Deakin’s Head of Brand & Content, Jessica McCartney said; “Given that driving the digital frontier is part of Deakin’s core DNA, we wanted to bring that to life in a really engaging way for students at Open Day. It’s been really exciting watching this project develop with Hardhat and I’m absolutely thrilled to watch all these students play this. It’s unbelievably fun and I’m a bit jealous I’m not playing it myself!”
Hardhat’s Director of Strategy, Dan Monheit added; “This year we wanted to go bigger and bolder. The crazy thing about BCI is that it lets you physically see the power of your mind. We wanted people to experience that in a way that was fun and interactive, and what’s more fun and interactive than a giant, mind controlled race track?.”