The Reading / Listening - Brainwaves - Level 4

Scientists may be able to interpret what someone is saying by analysing their brainwaves. This could help millions suffering from communication problems and neurological disorders. Algorithms in the scientists' software can translate brainwaves into text on a screen in real time. The scientists are from the University of California. They say their algorithms are 97 per cent accurate at translating. They are working hard to improve this.



The scientists are in the early stages of their testing. Their software matched frequently-repeated features of speech to shapes of the mouth. These features included vowels, consonants and commands. The scientists used just 40 short and simple spoken sentences. They said: "Although we should like the decoder to learn and exploit the regularities of the language, it remains to show how many data would be required to expand...to a more general form of English."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Brainwaves - Level 5 or  Brainwaves - Level 6

Sources
  • https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-52094111
  • https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/mar/30/scientists-develop-ai-that-can-turn-brain-activity-into-text
  • https://www.inverse.com/innovation/brain-to-text


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. interpret what someone
  2. analysing their
  3. This could help
  4. neurological
  5. translate brainwaves
  6. in real
  7. 97 per cent accurate
  8. They are working hard
  1. disorders
  2. at translating
  3. time
  4. to improve this
  5. millions
  6. is saying
  7. into text
  8. brainwaves

Paragraph 2

  1. in the early stages of their
  2. frequently-
  3. vowels, consonants
  4. short and simple spoken
  5. we should like the decoder
  6. exploit the regularities of
  7. data would
  8. a more general form
  1. and commands
  2. be required
  3. to learn
  4. testing
  5. of English
  6. sentences
  7. repeated features
  8. the language

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Scientists may be (1) ___________________ what someone is saying by analysing their brainwaves. This (2) ___________________ suffering from communication problems and neurological disorders. Algorithms in the scientists' (3) ___________________ brainwaves into text on a screen in real time. The (4) ___________________ the University of California. They say their algorithms are 97 per cent (5) ___________________. They are (6) ___________________ improve this.

The scientists are in the (7) ___________________ their testing. Their software matched frequently-repeated (8) ___________________ to shapes of the mouth. These (9) ___________________, consonants and commands. The scientists used just 40 (10) ___________________ spoken sentences. They said: "Although we should like the decoder to (11) ___________________ the regularities of the language, it remains to show how many data would be required to expand...to a (12) ___________________ of English."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

Scientistsmaybeabletointerpretwhatsomeoneissayingbyanalysingt
heirbrainwaves.Thiscouldhelpmillionssufferingfromcommunication
problemsandneurologicaldisorders.Algorithmsinthescientists'softw
arecantranslatebrainwavesintotextonascreeninrealtime.Thescienti
stsarefromtheUniversityofCalifornia.Theysaytheiralgorithmsare97
percentaccurateattranslating.Theyareworkinghardtoimprovethis.T
hescientistsareintheearlystagesoftheirtesting.Theirsoftwarematch
edfrequently-repeatedfeaturesofspeechtoshapesofthemouth.The
sefeaturesincludedvowels,consonantsandcommands.Thescientists
usedjust40shortandsimplespokensentences.Theysaid:"Althoughw
eshouldlikethedecodertolearnandexploittheregularitiesofthelangua
ge,itremainstoshowhowmanydatawouldberequiredtoexpand...toa
moregeneralformofEnglish."

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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