BCI research is extensive and rapidly growing, as is growth in the interfaces between multiple key scientific areas, including biomedical engineering, neuroscience, computer science, electrical and computer engineering, materials science and nanotechnology, and neurology and neurosurgery.
BCI research is rapidly approaching first-generation medical practice — clinical trials of invasive BCI technologies and significant home use of noninvasive, electroencephalography (EEG-based) BCIs. The panel predicts that BCIs soon will markedly influence the medical device industry, and additionally BCI research will rapidly accelerate in non-medical arenas of commerce as well, particularly in the gaming, automotive, and robotics industries.
The focus of BCI research throughout the world was decidedly uneven, with invasive BCIs almost exclusively centered in North America, noninvasive BCI systems evolving primarily from European and Asian efforts. BCI research in Asia, and particularly China, is accelerating, with advanced algorithm development for EEG-based systems currently a hallmark of China’s BCI program. Future BCI research in China is clearly developing toward invasive BCI systems, so BCI researchers in the US will soon have a strong competitor.
Both primary aims diagnostic battery and single-switch BCI (ssBCI), will be evaluated by the targeted user groups.
We will intensively and continuously seek the input of clinicians for development, improvement and routine applicability of the diagnostic test battery. Likewise we will be in close contact to target user groups as well as their supporters to receive information about most urgent needs of the potential users of the ssBCI and in the next step to receive feedback on the BCI provided for non-responsive patients.
For both primary aims development and feedback will be a continuous iterative process. The outcome of this process will be disseminated among scientific colleagues, user groups, clinicians, and public via conferences, workshops, publications, and internet.
It is aimed at a cheap, easy to handle package for diagnosis and communication, which can be set up at the patients’ bed side by any individual caring for the patient. To summarize, the specific objectives are:
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