Mind over brain, brain over mind: cognitive causes and consequences of controlling brain activity
Elisabeth V. C. Friedrich
This Research Topic combines articles aiming to gain a better understanding on different factors that determine whether people are successful or not in controlling computerized devices with brain signals. Since decades, technological advancements in neuroscience allow the interpretation of brain signals and their translation into control messages (Brain-computer interface (BCI)). Moreover, the control of brain signals can be used to induce changes in cognition and behavior (Neurofeedback (NF)). However, the break-through of this technology for the broad population in real-world applications has not yet arrived. Various factors have been related to the individual success in controlling computerized devices with brain signals, but to date, no general theoretical framework is available. In this Research Topic, aspects of the training protocol such as instructions, task and feedback as well as cognitive and psychological traits such as motivation, mood, locus of control and empathy are investigated as determinants of BCI or NF performance. Moreover, the mechanisms and networks involved in gaining and maintaining control over brain activity as well as its prediction are addressed. Finally, as the ultimate goal of this research is to use BCI and NF for communication or control and therapy, respectively, novel applications for individuals with disabilities or disorders are discussed.