Yesterday’s post about cyborgs has not surprisingly brought all things cybernetic top of mind. This post by Cory at BoingBoing about an open source library for programming a proprietary but arguably affordable EEG headset neatly fits the filter. If I’m lucky, maybe I can find a story a day for the reminder of the month to honor September’s theme as noted on Slashdot yesterday.
From the developer’s github site:
I’ve been interested in the Emotiv EPOC headset for a while; a $300 14-sensor EEG. It’s intended for gaming, but it’s quite high quality. There’s a research SDK available for $750, but it’s Windows-only and totally proprietary. I decided to hack it, and open the consumer headset up to development. Thanks to donations I got some hardware in hand this weekend.
That announcement page also has a good overview of where development is at and where help is needed. The license is essentially a public domain dedication with an exception for some code borrowed from elsewhere. Emokit is written in Python which may turn off style snobs but does make the library accessible and portable. A C library is planned which will undoubtedly broaden the project’s appeal.
H+ also has an in-depth interview with the person responsible, Cody Brocious. It provides some good context, explaining that while there are other options for open source EEG hacking, Emokit plus the EPOC headset lowers the cost and makes it more accessible.