Tag Archives: neurofeedback

Reflections on first International Conference on Physiological Computing Systems

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Last week I attended the first international conference on physiological computing held in Lisbon.  Before commenting on the conference, it should be noted that I was one of the program co-chairs, so I am not completely objective – but as this was something of a watershed event for research in this area, I didn’t want to let the conference pass without comment on the blog.

The conference lasted for two-and-a-half days and included four keynote speakers.  It was a relatively small meeting with respect to the number of delegates – but that is to be expected from a fledgling conference in an area that is somewhat niche with respect to methodology but very broad in terms of potential applications.

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Physiological Computing: increased self-awareness or the fast track to a divided ego?

In last week’s excellent Bad Science article from The Guardian, Ben Goldacre puts his finger on a topic that I think is particularly relevant for physiological computing systems.  He quotes press reports about MRI research into “hypoactive sexual desire response” – no, I hadn’t heard of it either, it’s a condition where the person has low libido.  In this study women with the condition and ‘normals’ viewed erotic imagery in the scanner.  A full article on the study from the Mail can be found here but what caught the attention of Bad Science is this interesting quote from one of the researchers involved: “Being able to identify physiological changes, to me provides significant evidence that it’s a true disorder as opposed to a societal construct.”

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