6th International Brain-Computer Interface Conference, Graz University of Technology

by Dr. Reinhold Scherer
Deputy Head of the Institute for Knowledge Discovery in Graz (Austria)

The 6th International Brain-Computer Interface Conference took place from September 16 – 19, 2014 at the Graz University of Technology, Graz, Austria. This year’s conference theme was “The Future of Brain-Computer Interaction: Basics, Shortcomings, Users”. About two hundred researchers from 35 nations participated in the event and made it a huge success.

It was a pleasure for the Graz-BCI team to host the conference for the 6th time. The first day of the conference focused on networking. Participants had the opportunity to interact with representatives of European projects, the industry and end-user groups, and to discuss issues and possible solutions related to BCI. Manfred Halver from the Austrian Research Promotion Agency was present and available to answer relevant questions concerning the Horizon 2020 EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. Days 2 to 4 were focused on research and on sharing of scientific ideas. Brain-Computer Interfacing is a very interdisciplinary research area. Therefore, the organizers aimed at providing a balanced mix of novel research results in several areas, which included, among others, engineering, signal processing, machine learning and pattern recognition, basic neuroscience, psychology, and work in end-users with different medical conditions. By mixing talks and poster from all these areas and using a single-track structure, it was possible to create a varied and exciting program for the attendees. Other key success factors were the keynote speakers Scott Makeig (Towards Robust, Pervasive Brain-Computer Interfaces) and Nick F. Ramsey (Sweet spots for BCI implants: the matter of finding and interfacing).

As usual, talented and emerging young scientists that pursue a PhD degree have been awarded prizes that were sponsored by Brain Products GmbH. The awards consisting of a check of Euro 500 along with a trophy and certificate were presented in two categories: Best Talk and Best Poster.

The proceedings of the conference are freely available and can be downloaded at http://bci.tugraz.at.