4th April 2014
The TechLab and School of Physiology joined forces to offer a TSP project for Semester 1 2014.
The Pitch was:
The brain is an amazing collection of cells that generate electrical signals. We can see these signals using EEG technology, but can you use your brainwaves to perform remote tasks? Crystallize your thoughts into a concrete physical outcome. The recent advent of cheap portable Bluetooth EEG headsets allows us to output our brainwaves as digital data streams that can then be used to control remote devices.
For this project you will work with physiologist and IT engineers to develop an app that uses EEG headsets to perform a task of your own design. What about a Sphero soccer game? Or Mindtunes?
To succeed you will need to complement your creative streak with some neurophysiology and programming skills. Interested? Check out emotiv.com for inspiration. This project is in conjunction with the ICT TechLab, which means you will use the coolest and latest devices to help you develop your app.
Once in the Lab for the initial kick off, the Students landed on the concept of using an EEG headset to control a Novation Launchpad
Can we control music creation and mixing with only Neural activity and blinking?
Our 8x8 square pad is divided so that each column represents a separate instrument group (i.e. drum, bass) and each row represents a different genre (i.e. jazz, funk, hip hop). We move up through columns by level of concentration, whereby reaching an “eSense Attention” threshold of 75 (out of 100) will program a continuous change from one square to the next through that column. A blink engages the row and an increase in concentration (beyond 75) will cause the program to move right continuously through the chosen row. Another blink will engage the desired square, which will then turn on/off the desired track.
Furthermore, we defined visual feedback – i.e. a red square to show where we are on the Launch Pad before we make a selection and for the desired square to change colour upon blinking (selection). In addition, the first row of the Launch Pad is blank to allow us to cancel out all sounds in the row.
We also incorporated the pentatonic scale into the pad in the final column. The pentatonic-associated squares will fire according to the following thresholds set for our eSense Attention:
Python, MIT Scratch, Neurosky Mindwave EEG, Abelton Pro
The internet of things is the network of everyday objects embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity...