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BRAIN-M INAUGURAL MESSAGE 12/1/95
To the brain-m e-mailing list for the BrainMaster project.
Greetings, and welcome to the list. About 80 people have signed up.
First of all, Thanks Again to Dave and Vaughn of mtjeff.com for providing this list server!
I'd like to see the project moving next month, by sharing experiences of people who have built and/or are using/have used a BrainMaster. (There are a few of you out there). I will also make boards and parts available, to get it into more widespread use. I will have parts for 5 more units this year, 20 units by March, and perhaps 100 by the end of 1996. But things could change, depending on what the future holds. I plan to do some labs and teaching in the Spring, as well.
I invite members to introduce themselves, and say whatever they like, of an introductory nature. Interests, goals, experience, etc.
This can be an open forum, so if people get interested in a topic, they can take it away. I'll continue to post information, and perhaps FAQ's to the list. I'll keep the web site current, as well.
The main goal of this list is to share EEG biofeedback, and BrainMaster knowledge, and to help proliferate use and application. We can also discuss the Waverider, BrainTracer, MindMirror, etc. If things really get out of hand, you should take it to mind-l. (right, Phil?) ;-)
But any topic related to EEG biofeedback, paradigms, applications, L/S, consciousness exploration, is fine. We can discuss things that a BrainMaster ought to do someday, and then figure out how to get there!
Ideally, there will be various forms of the project at various locations, people exploring, testing, experimenting, and basically getting what's left of the Decade of the Brain into the basements, labs, and kitchen tables of the world.
I'll say a little about myself and the project. I am a biomedical engineer with 20 years in industry and in clinical neurology, designing a wide range of computerized systems. I received a Ph.D. in 1978, for a project involving an analog EEG system that recorded steady-state evoked potentials. I have always been fascinated by brainwaves, and have built small computer-based EEG systems in my home as an ongoing hobby. My interest has been simple, personal systems.
It occurred to me that there might be a demand, and a contribution to be made, by providing a personal EEG that is very affordable, simple, and flexible. The applications would include education, research, hobby, self-improvement, and mind-controlled applications. As emerging applications arise, this device can serve as a platform of choice. An open, shared design, and collaboration with many others, is an essential part of this concept. An Apple II for brainwaves.
The applications that interest me most are self-improvement, and related to consciousness exploration. However, all possible applications are exciting. I hope to see this project grow over the years, and emerge from the Decade of the Brain as something seriously useful and new.
Most recently, progress in helping with disorders such as ADD, is very exciting. I would especially like to see the BrainMaster used as a computerized toy or recreation, that helps people to improve themselves, while exercising and conditioning the brain.
The current embodiment is a 2-channel EEG, but with up to 8 channels of A/D, and room for additional circuitry. The HC11 code will handle from 1 to 8 channels, plus digital I/O. The Windows code is only 1 channel right now, but will do 2/4 channels very soon. I'll make the Symantek C++ code available to any user who needs it, and agrees not to sell it or give it away. I also plan on a DDE interface to Visual Basic - anyone who can help with that? Next steps also include built-in calibration and electrode test.
The current Windows code is like that on the web site, but I've just added some threshold controls, and paradigm adjustment, so you can do various protocols. There's also a Pac-man game! I plan to upload the latest program to the web site soon.
I am very interested in hearing from potential collaborators who want to develop some aspect of the project. Hardware, software, applications, documentation, you name it. Perhaps getting into a mainstream C++ compiler would be in order?
We also need to develop some SIMPLE, clean, reliable electrodes. I have been working with plastic, sponges, velcro, etc. Another topic.
Some of the near-term project goals include:
Built-in calibration and electrode test (nice HW project!) 2- and 4- channel operation (HC11 testing, Windows SW needed) Adding EMG, GSR, TEMP if there is interest Better artifact rejection (now uses amplitude only) Coherence display (minor windows SW work - how to display??) Link to Visual Basic, other programs.
That's all for now.
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Web Site: http://pantek.com/~tomc Let me know if this site is too slow. I'll work on it.
Thanks for your continued interest and participation.
My Best Regards, Tom Collura