Black Lives Matter...
ALL LIVES MATTER
Our physical, psychological and cognitive disabilities may limit us, but they do not define us.
Injuries and illnesses have serious consequences, especially when they affect the brain and nervous system, but they shouldn’t diminish who we are as individuals.
Up until now, the brain and nervous system have been the hardest parts of the human body to treat, and so the medical profession has fallen back on drugs to alleviate the symptoms as much as possible. The problem is, all of these drugs have serious side effects.
The good news is that research on neurons and how they operate has been ongoing. We now know a great deal more than we did even five years ago. We are able to look inside the brain, to view what's going on and see where the problem areas are. And, we are able to manipulate how neurons behave. That is HUGE.
Recently, an international team of researchers conducted a study looking at two different types of BCI systems; one involved imagining physical movements and the other involved visual stimulation. The purpose of the study was to determine if just one hour's use of a BCI device could induce spatially specific changes in the brain’s neural connections. 1
The results of both studies showed conclusively that even that small amount of BCI training had an effect on the brain’s structural and functional plasticity. This phenomenon, in which neuronal connections are significantly affected by using the BCI device, is called BCI-induced brain plasticity. 2
This conclusion supports the thesis presented in "Who Is Anna," that there is every reason to believe that portable, non-invasive BCI kits (headsets paired with iPhones or iPads) can be created that are therapeutically tailored to treat specific disorders and disabilities.
TIMELINE in the development of BCIs
Scroll to see how progress has occurred behind the scenes for the last 60 years
First EEG of the brain
Hans Berger, a German neuroscientist, discovers the electrical activity of the human brain with the first EEG.
The Intelligent Systems Center of The Applied Physics Laboratory was founded at John Hopkins University
as part of the war effort. Today it serves as the focal point for research and development in artificial intelligence, robotics and neuroscience, with a staff of 7,200 and a budget of $1.52 billion.
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