BCI

That's great, Doc

I’m doing a short presentation on Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) tomorrow. Sshhh, don’t tell anybody but I did a short paper on it last year for the intro class, and I still have an outline of the thing – a.k.a no work put into it other than about 3 minutes of googling any new articles that might have popped up since then. I feel that having to publicly speak is punishment enough, so it balances out. Putting my poor work ethic aside, this topic is actually pretty fascinating because of what it offers to people with disabilities. In a nutshell – electrodes, either implanted directly into the grey matter of the brain or placed non-invasively on the head, interpret manifestations of brain activity without the user needing to use voluntary muscles. Communication-wise, it’s like a God-send for people with ALS or who have locked-in syndrome. Their having access to a means of communication (other than an eye blink system) is such an essential aspect to their quality of life. And it’s also fantastic that BCI/neuroprosthetics are being developed for people who are paralyzed, or have damaged sight/hearing. Seriously exciting times.

"Marty!"

Of couse there are other groups who will benefit from this too, like PC gamers (my brother’s eyes lit up when I told him about it), the military, etc. There’s also an ethical debate to this because things like brain pacemakers, which work to control a person’s depression or epilepsy, could eventually be used to change a person’s behaviors. Science fiction = now, y’all.

A 60 Minutes segment on BCI:

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About bunkercomplex

My name is Andrea, and I'm a 23 year old Southern California girl and a newly minted Speech-Language Pathologist. When I’m not high-fiving 8-year-olds for finally producing a good /r/ sound, I fill my time with Peter Gabriel, Ayn Rand, Phil Hendrie, bicycles, Korean stationery, movie marathon nights, and baking. You can email me at bunkercomplex@gmail.com.
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6 Responses to BCI

  1. Shalom says:

    That’s awesome (the subject matter and the fact that you get more mileage out of your paper from last year).

    Did you see last week’s House? In case you didn’t, BCI played a large role in the episode.

    • bunkercomplex says:

      I did see it and I love when things in life coincide like that. I was going to show that clip until I found the 60 Minutes one, which is a little more legitimate than a Fox drama…

  2. Shalom says:

    Those coincidences are definitely one of life’s fun little ways to make your day more interesting. Either that, or a surefire sign that we’re being watched and toyed with. That’s why as much as I love iTune’s/iPod’s shuffle feature, I’m also fearful that Steve Jobs is an evil wizard.

    And I don’t know, Mos Def and Hugh Laurie are great sources for news and ground-breaking discoveries in science and medicine.

  3. Nicole says:

    You should open with the House clip. Use it as your intro, Thor-style. 🙂

  4. Nicole says:

    I would give you so much money if you ran in and screamed, “Come here you devil log!” I’m not even joking.

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