As quite a new member of MindAffect, it is time to introduce myself. I am Daniëlle, born and raised in Amsterdam, and I have a passion for everything brain-related!
With a bachelor in interdisciplinary studies and a specialization in Psychology and Artificial Intelligence, I was determined to dive into something that would combine both fields. This has lead me to pursue the masters Cognitive Neuroscience and Artificial Intelligence with a very specific goal; to get hands-on experience with Brain Computer Interface (BCI) and to know more about the underlying processes. The thing about BCIs that interests me the most is that both the computer as the brain are essential to the entire system, and together they could result in an action that is better than any of them separate. As if BCI is not a great enough adventure on its own, during my masters I did a project on the possibility to control the BCI in space. This could increase efficiency of astronauts as they could then use it as their ‘third arm’. With the help of parabolic flights, we found out that BCIs still work in zero-gravity!
Even though BCIs proved usable in space, it needs a lot of further research to be applicable in the future. Meanwhile, BCIs could already be applied to people with disabilities, such as those suffering from Locked-in syndrome. When they have lost their ability to communicate, they loose all contact with surroundings and their way to express themselves, increasing the need to decrease the suffering. It is just incredible that BCIs can help these people and that I am now a part of this exciting innovation through MindAffect. Nothing beats the smile of the people using it when it works!
Within MindAffect I am responsible of experimenting with the BCI setup and developing it further to improve its accuracy and usability. Of course, I do not do this alone; it is very exciting to work in a team with people of very different backgrounds that are all as passionate about the goal as I am!
You can always reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.