Introduction: Evolution of Brain-Computer Interfaces
Authors: Fabien Lotte (Inria, France, firstname.lastname@example.org) Chang S. Nam (NCSU, USA, email@example.com) Anton Nijholt (Univ. Twente, The Netherlands, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCIs) are systems that translate a measure of a user‘s brain activity into messages or commands for an interactive application. A typical example of a BCI is a system that enables a user to move a ball on a computer screen towards the left or towards the right, by imagining left or right hand movement respectively. The very term BCI was coined in the 70’s, and since then, interest and research efforts in BCIs grew tremendously, with possibly hundreds of laboratories around the world studying this topic. This has resulted in a very large number of paradigms, methods, concepts and applications of such technology. This handbook thus aims at providing an overview and tutorials of the multiple and rich facets of BCIs. As an introduction to this vast endeavor, we would like to present a short and brief history of BCIs, in order to explain where they come from. Figure 1 illustrates BCI technology trends and historical events. Since we are no historians of science, such historical introduction is likely to be incomplete and biased, according to our background, views and (conscious or not) preferences. Nonetheless, we hope this will enable the readers to get a quick overview of the development in BCIs these last 30 or 40 years, and will motivate them to learn more about BCI concepts, which this handbook should make easier.
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