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Hack the Brain Prague – Day 2 Report

Venuše ve Švehlovce, a 19th-century theatre hall in the Prague district of Žižkov is the location for Hack the Brain Prague Hackathon. Over 3 days, seven teams of artists, scientists, developers and psychologists are working collaboratively on a range of projects using BCI technologies. Day 1 was opened by local organisers Pavel Smetana and Cyril Kaplan, Waag Society’s Jurre Ongering on behalf of the BrainHack consortium, and STARTS initiative representatives Peter Friess and Luis-Miguel Girao. Technical mentors were introduced. Participants introduced ideas, and during the team-forming stage, joined into groups to work together for the remainder of the weekend. Technical presentations from IBM and OpenVibe followed. At the end of the evening, teams reported on the status of their projects and asked for any assistance they needed from fellow participants or mentors. On Day 2, the teams continued to work to improve and refine their projects, which include animation and sonification of EEG data, a virtual instrument to be played by the brain, a project which will stimulate the brain to remain at the optimal level for work if the user’s concentration or focus begin to slip, and a kinetic “worm” statue which will change shape in response to brain signals. The afternoon session featured talks from artist Peter Friess, and jury members Beatrice de Gelder, Pier Luigi Capucci, Achilleas Kentonis and Brandon Allison who discussed various aspects of their own work.