An EEG-based musical instrument for clinical therapy and performance art
The Encephalophone is an EEG-based musical instrument for clinical therapy and performance art. The concept was created by Dr. Thomas Deuel, an M.D./Ph.D. at from UW DXARTS and Seattle's Swedish Hospital. The device has been used for diverse projects including rehabilitative clinical trials with patients suffering motor impairment, concerts, and brain-computer interface research.
The Encephalophone is controlled by user connected to an EEG. By modulating how much one thinks about movement (i.e. thinking about making a fist and squeezing), he/she is able to control the mu rhythem of the motor cortex, an 8-12 Hz wave that is most prominent when a person is not moving nor thinking about moving. The power detected in the mu rhythm frequency band in the motor cortex is used to select one of eight notes that are played via a SuperCollider engine.
I wrote the Matlab code that interfaced a commercially-available Mitsar EEG headset and amplifier with a laptop via the open-source Lab Streaming Layer (LSL) protocol, processed the EEG data (e.g. filtering, power extraction, note classification) and transmitted notes to the SuperCollider engine.