Brain computer Interfacing in 2011 May 20&21 Utrecht

BCI in 2011: From EEG to cortical implants

Science is on the verge of physically integrating human brain and advanced technology in the service of rehabilitation in paralysed people. Recordings from the brain capture detailed neuronal events that can be used to convey intentions for control in computer programs or of robotic limbs. Non-invasive and intracranial solutions utilize electrophysiological signals, but from different neuronal population sizes. Size matters as it determines the detail of information that can be used for BCI, ranging from single neurons to tens of millions depending on type and position of electrodes. Different BCI solutions are likely to serve different needs in patients.
The majority of current BCI technologies use EEG scalp electrodes, for detection of several types of mental events such as imagined movements and the P300 oddball response. EEG-based BCI is now close to clinical implementation in the homes of paralysed people.
Several human pilot studies have been conducted with intracranial BCI. Amazing achievements have been reported in research with non-human primates, paving the road for further development of human BCI. Much of the required technology for signal processing and decoding currently still resides outside of the body, but with state of the art electronics fully implantable devices are conceivable.

What will be presented?

In 2008 we organized a symposium dedicated to the State of the Art in BCI, with a focus on implantable systems. Now, three years later we evaluate the progress. Thirteen speakers will present the latest developments in both scalp-EEG BCI and in all aspects relevant to implantable systems. Scalp-EEG solutions will be discussed in the light of historical developments and of hurdles on the road to commercial availability, and experts will present their views on the future. Implantable systems have to deal with various issues of safety and justification and are therefore more challenging to accomplish. Several approaches are now adopted that vary in the brain areas and functions that are targeted, the type of electrode (cortex penetrating or surface types), and the dimensionality of information decoding (from a simple yes/no switch to complex grasp trajectories). So, what is the current state of affairs? What kind of systems can we expect to see, and when? Key players in the field of BCI will present where the research stands and what is envisioned for the near future.

Who is it for?

The symposium primarily targets neuroscientists, clinicians and biomedical engineers. The meeting is open to faculty and students, clinicians and practitioners.

Who is speaking?

Brendan Allison
Bernhard Graimann
Eberhard Fetz
Beata Jarosiewicz
Andrea Kübler
Jean-Philippe Lachaux
Eric Leuthardt
Phil Kennedy
Nick Ramsey
Gerwin Schalk
Bill Shain
Andrew Schwartz
Jonathan Wolpaw

The program can be read here.

Handouts of many talks can be requested at

Where is it?

The symposium is at the University Medical Hospital, Heidelberglaan 100, 3584CX, Utrecht, The Netherlands. If you enter the main entrance the registration desk is at the left hand side, one floor down.


Rudolf Magnus Institute for Neuroscience and the BrainGain Consortium
organised by RMI Utrechtorganised by the BrainGain consortium

Other dissemination

During the symposium posters of the following national and european BCI projects are presented:
BrainGain, FBNCI, Mindwalker, BrainAble, AsTeRICS, Better, Tremor

One of our sponsors is organizing the Annual BCI Research Award 2011. The competition is open to any BCI group worldwide. More info on


The following companies will exhibit their products at the symposium:

Brain Products MedCAT

TMS international



KMI Ad-Tech"


These organizations contributed to the symposium:

Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research

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