Vibrating Glove Teaches People How to Play the Piano



As soon as you feel your finger vibrate, press the piano key. The Mobile Music Touch system devised by researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology will teach you how to play the piano.
The glove, which looks like a workout glove with a small box on the back, is used with a piano keyboard and vibrates a person’s fingers to indicate which keys to play. While learning to play the instrument, several people with SCI experienced improved sensation in their fingers. [...]

The MMT system works with a computer, MP3 player or smart phone. A song, such as Ode to Joy, is programmed into a device, which is wirelessly linked to the glove. As the musical notes are illuminated on the correct keys on the piano keyboard, the gadget sends vibrations to “tap” the corresponding fingers. The participants play along, gradually memorizing the keys and learning additional songs.

But the research team has ambitions far higher than building a musical education device. They envision it as a tool for helping people with spinal injuries recover sensation:
“Some people were able to pick up objects more easily,” said Markow. “Another said he could immediately feel the heat from a cup of coffee, rather than after a delay.”

Markow believes the increased motor abilities could be caused by renewed brain activity that sometimes becomes dormant in persons with SCI. The vibration might be triggering activity in the hand’s sensory cortex, which leads to firing in the brain’s motor cortex. Markow would like to expand the study to include functional MRI results.

Link -via Walyou | Photo: Georgia Tech

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