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Scientific Program

At the University of Pittsburgh, we have worked with two participants and have shown that recording and decoding the activity of a few hundred neurons in motor cortex enables a person to control a prosthetic arm with up to 10 degrees-of-freedom continuously and simultaneously.

In this seminar, I will discuss how we have used electrical microsimulation in the primary somatosensory cortex to restore lost cutaneous sensations, what stimulation in the cortex feels like, how these sensations can remain stable over many years and how restoring artificial touch can improve performance in real-world motor control tasks.

Ultimately we aim to restore dexterous hand and arm movements, complete with the appropriate sensory experiences, to people who have lost their limbs or are unable to use them because of injury or disease.

Active research topics include developing novel neural interfaces to regulate bladder function, developing prosthetic controller systems for amputees that enable dexterous hand movements through implanted myoelectric interfaces, and developing bidirectional implantable brain machine interfaces for upper limb prosthesis control.

Machine learning, however, has undergone a radical transformation in the past two decades, resulting in artificial intelligence (AI) systems that surpass human performance in many real-world tasks.

I argue that it is time for the BCI community to embrace these developments and build Brain-AI Interfaces (BAIs), i.e., systems that leverage the power of modern AI systems to enable natural human-computer interaction.

In particular, I argue that to realize BAIs we will have to move beyond our dominant decoding paradigm, in which we determine a priori the labels we intend to decode from neural signals, and let the AI system decide the level of granularity at which cognitive processes are represented in neural signals.

He develops machine learning algorithms that provide insights into how large-scale neural activity gives rise to (disorders of) cognition, and applies these algorithms in the domain of cognitive neural engineering, e.g., to build brain-computer interfaces for communication with severely paralyzed patients, design closed-loop neural interfaces for stroke rehabilitation, and develop personalized brain stimulation paradigms.

Christoph Schommer

As an IT Architect, he was responsible for worldwide Data Mining projects in different businesses, for example in Retail, Insurance, Banking, Sports Analytics - just to name a few.During this time, he also received hisPhD from the Goethe-University Frankfurt/Main (Roberto Zicari, Wolfgang Giere) for a theoretical work about the importance of Data Mining for a Medical Healthcare (2001).Today, Christoph works as Associate Professor at the University of Luxembourg with main focus on Artificial Intelligence, KnowledgeDiscovery, Machine Learning, and Natural Language Processing.He heads a team of 3 PostDocs, 3 PhD candidate, and several Master students.

As an IT Architect, he was responsible for worldwide Data Mining projects in different businesses, for example in Retail, Insurance, Banking, Sports Analytics - just to name a few.During this time, he also received hisPhD from the Goethe-University Frankfurt/Main (Roberto Zicari, Wolfgang Giere) for a theoretical work about the importance of Data Mining for a Medical Healthcare (2001).Today, Christoph works as Associate Professor at the University of Luxembourg with main focus on Artificial Intelligence, KnowledgeDiscovery, Machine Learning, and Natural Language Processing.He heads a team of 3 PostDocs, 3 PhD candidate, and several Master students.

Panel Sessions

They are already making their marks not only in applications that are purely data-analytics related, but also in communications, transportation, navigation, autonomous driving, finance, e-commerce, gaming, and many more fields.

Our distinguished panelists from the academia, DARPA, CAD/EDA, and RF industries will debate what we may expect to see in the near and distant future, and how we should prepare ourselves for the inevitable realities.

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