Wall Street Journal:

A scientist studying optical illusions discovered a way that people can write with their eyes in cursive script on a computer monitor—an innovation that could help severely disabled people communicate more freely, and potentially lead to visual-control systems for pilots, drivers and surgeons.

“It is like drawing with a pencil, but without a tip,” said Jean Lorenceau, director of research at the French National Center for Scientific Research, who conducted the study at the University of Pierre and Marie Curie in Paris. His research was reported Thursday in Current Biology.

The unusually smooth eye movements produced by the system can be used “to draw, write or generate a signature,” he said.

In recent years, researchers have devised a variety of communication systems for the severely disabled that use electrical responses from the brain or eye movements. With eye-tracking headwear or electrodes, eye movements can be used to guide a computer cursor, pick out control characters on a screen or compose messages by selecting letters one at a time.