Development and Analysis of an Application for Cursor Control through Brain-Machine Interface: Accessibility Method for People with Physical Disabilities

By Marcelo Xavier and Rosilane Mota.

Published by Journal of Technologies and Human Usability

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Article: Electronic $US5.00

This research aimed to develop a system that would allow physically disabled people to control a cursor through brain-computer interface (BCI), enabling them to perform tasks on a computer. Such a system could provide more independence and improve communication skills for disabled people, thus providing a better quality of life (Kübler 2001). The present paper analyzed the EMOTIV Epoc BCI device (Emotiv 2012), developed statistic solutions on brain activity patterns identified by the device, developed an application to allow the cursor’s control through the device, and performed tests with 20 people with and without physical disabilities. The tests required participants to click objects on the screen and type sentences on a virtual keyboard, which enabled researchers to evaluate quantitatively and qualitatively their use of the computer. The results showed that 90% of people, including 4 of 5 disabled subjects, were able to perform tasks on the computer satisfactorily. The developed solution also improved the cursor’s control by 65%. The system allowed the usage of the computer satisfactorily, providing accessibility to computers for physically disabled people.

Keywords: Brain Computer Interface, Cursor Control, Assistive Technology, Restricted Mobility, Usability, Accessibility

Journal of Technologies and Human Usability, Volume 10, Issue 1, May 2014, pp.17-24. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 164.536KB).

Marcelo Xavier

Student, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil

Marcelo Xavier has a bachelor's degree in computer science from PUC Minas. He has studied at Hochschule Furtwangen University in Germany and is interested in brain-computer interface, user-computer interface, and assistive technology and acessibility.

Prof. Rosilane Mota

Professor, Computer Science Department, Pontifical University of Minas Gerais - PUC Minas, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

Rosilane Mota has a MSc and a BSc in computer science. She is also a professor at UFMG and PUC Minas. She is also a researcher in digital game, affective computing, art installation and interface design.