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Mindflex is a toy by Mattel by which, according to its description, the operator uses their brain waves to steer a ball through an obstacle course. Brain waves are registered by the enclosed EEG headset, which allows the user to control an air stream by concentrating, thus lifting or lowering a foam ball.[1] The game was released in the fall of 2009,[2] and uses the same microchip as the MindSet from NeuroSky and homebuilt EEG machines.[3]


Despite the science behind the technology developed by Mattel, outside scientists have questioned whether the toy actually measures brain waves or just randomly moves the ball, exploiting the well-known illusion of control.[4][5] However, despite the John-Dylan Haynes experiments, supporters of the game stand behind the research that went into the development of Mindflex, and believe that the headset does indeed read EEGs.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ MindFlex Games, archived from the original on 2009-01-16
  2. ^ Scott Stein (June 26, 2009), "Moving objects with Mattel's brainwave-reading Mindflex", CNET News
  3. ^ a b Eric Mika (April 7, 2010), "How to Hack Toy EEGs", Frontier Nerds Blog
  4. ^ Hilmar Schmundt (February 22, 2010), "Aberglaube im Kinderzimmer", Der Spiegel (In German)
  5. ^ Hilmar Schmundt (May 11, 2011), "Wenn der Ball nicht macht, was der Kopf will", Der Spiegel (In German)

External links[edit]