Insight2OSC: using the brain and the body as a musical instrument with the Emotiv Insight


Brain computer interfaces are being widely adopted for music creation and interpretation, and they are becoming a truly new category of musical instruments. Indeed, Miranda has coined the term Brain-computer Musical Interface (BCMI) to refer to this category. There are no "plug-n-play" solutions for a BCMI, these kinds of tools usually require the setup and implementation of particular software configurations, customized for each EEG device. The Emotiv Insight is a low-cost EEG apparatus that outputs several kinds of data, such as EEG rhythms or facial expressions, from the user's brain activity. We have developed a BCMI, in the form of a freely available middle-ware, using the Emotiv Insight for EEG input and signal processing. The obtained data, via blue-tooth is broad-casted over the network formatted for the OSC protocol. Using this software, we tested the device's adequacy as a BCMI by using the provided data in order to control different sound synthesis algorithms in MaxMSP. We conclude that the Emotiv Insight is an interesting choice for a BCMI due to its low-cost and ease of use, but we also question its reliability and robustness.


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