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Singapore research team first place in Brain-Computer Interface contest

The Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) research team at Singapore's Infocomm Research (I2R) has won first place in the worldwide BCI Competition IV, 2008, in all three electroencephalogram (EEG) based non-invasive BCI categories.

The results were announced on Dec. 12 at the international Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS) conference in Vancouver, Canada.

The Singapore scientists designed the non-invasive BCI technology to provide a direct communication channel between the human brain and the computer, so that physically handicapped individuals, such as "locked-in" patients who have lost effective communication and interactive abilities, would be able to communicate and interact with their environment through thoughts, rather than relying on normal, neuromuscular pathways.

The scientists at I2R, which is one of the research institutes under Singapore's A*STAR (Agency for Science, Technology and Research) and which is headquartered at the Asian city-state's new R&D epicenter, Fusionopolis, have developed new algorithms and novel techniques that have dramatically improved the efficiency, accuracy and convenience of non-invasive BCI systems.

In Singapore, research work and clinical tests are currently being carried out on a variety of BCI applications such as a communication platform for paralyzed patients, rehabilitation for stroke patients and the treatment for children with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

For more information about Singapore's BCI technology:

During the competition, the Singapore scientists demonstrated clear strengths in EEG-based non-invasive BCI technology among a total of 35 submissions by scientists from the United States, Europe, Australia, and Asia.

The BCI Competition IV, funded by the European Network of Excellence PASCAL2, was organized by the Berlin Institute of Technology/Fraunhofer FIRST, Graz University of Technology, University of Tbingen, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

For more information about the competition:

Heading Singapore's BCI research team is Dr. Guan Cuntai.

"I would like to congratulate Dr Guan Cuntai and the team for this achievement. This simply proves that our in-house developed technologies are able to compete with the global offerings on a level playing field," said Dr. Lye Kin Mun, Deputy Executive Director for research at I2R. "I see this achievement as having a stamp of recognition from fellow researchers over the world for the team at I2R."


Contact: Cathy Yarbrough
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore

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