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A gaze independent hybrid-BCI based on visual spatial attention

Egan, John M., Loughnane, Gerard M., Fletcher, Helen, Meade, Emma and Lalor, Edmund C. (2017) A gaze independent hybrid-BCI based on visual spatial attention. Journal of Neural Engineering, 14 (4). 046006. ISSN 1741-2552

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Objective. Brain-computer interfaces (BCI) use measures of brain activity to convey a user's intent without the need for muscle movement. Hybrid designs, which use multiple measures of brain activity, have been shown to increase the accuracy of BCIs, including those based on EEG signals reflecting covert attention. Our study examined whether incorporating a measure of the P3 response improved the performance of a previously reported attention-based BCI design that incorporates measures of steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEP) and alpha band modulations.

Approach. Subjects viewed stimuli consisting of two bi-laterally located flashing white boxes on a black background. Streams of letters were presented sequentially within the boxes, in random order. Subjects were cued to attend to one of the boxes without moving their eyes, and they were tasked with counting the number of target-letters that appeared within. P3 components evoked by target appearance, SSVEPs evoked by the flashing boxes, and power in the alpha band are modulated by covert attention, and the modulations can be used to classify trials as left-attended or right-attended.

Main Results. We showed that classification accuracy was improved by including a P3 feature along with the SSVEP and alpha features (the inclusion of a P3 feature lead to a 9% increase in accuracy compared to the use of SSVEP and Alpha features alone). We also showed that the design improves the robustness of BCI performance to individual subject differences.

Significance. These results demonstrate that incorporating multiple neurophysiological indices of covert attention can improve performance in a gaze-independent BCI.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Divisions: School of Business > Staff Research and Publications
Depositing User: Caoimhe Ní Mhaicín
Date Deposited: 03 Jan 2020 11:22
Last Modified: 03 Jan 2020 11:22

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