Making brain-computer interfaces better

Brain-computer interfaces suck. The input they provide is uncertain and very sensitive to noise. Let's improve accuracy and reduce effort, by leveraging context information. Be amazed by the power of post-processing!


My name is Danny Plass-Oude Bos, and I'm a PhD student at the Human-Media Interaction group at the University of Twente. I'm interested in how we can improve brain-computer interfaces by applying post-processing methods, such as smoothing, hysteresis, and predictive models. I hope to present my defense around January 2014. My supervisors are Dr. Mannes Poel and Prof. Anton Nijholt. My position has been paid from the national BrainGain SmartMix project, and is part of the CTIT SRO NICE.

Visiting address
Room 2037
Zilverling (building 11)
University of Twente

Phone: +31 53 489 3194
Fax: +31 53 489 3503
Postal address
University of Twente
Faculty of EEMCS / HMI group
Danny Plass-Oude Bos
P.O. Box 217
7500AE Enschede
The Netherlands

Research prototypes


BrainBasher is a game played with imaginary movement. The experience and performance with a clinical look was compared to a playful look. Bram van de Laar continued the research, comparing actual and imaginary movement.


In the popular video game World of Warcraft, you play a druid. Druids can change into animals. In your human form you are very good at casting spells from a distance. When you change into a bear you excel at close combat with your sharp claws and teeth. In this version, when you are stressed or aggressive you change into a bear, and when you relax you revert to your human form. Your brain now determines the way you play.


This YouTube video shows almost all our BCI demos. Missing are some demos I have not been involved in personally, such as BrainBrush and BrainTwitter.


Personal favorites

  1. Turning shortcomings into challenges: Brain-computer interfaces for games
    A Nijholt, D Plass-Oude Bos, B Reuderink. Entertainment Computing 1 (2), 2009.
  2. Brain-computer interfacing and games
    D Plass-Oude Bos, B Reuderink, B Laar, H Gürkök, C Mühl, M Poel, A Nijholt, D Heylen. Brain-Computer Interfaces, 2010.
  3. A Preliminary Survey on the Perception of Marketability of Brain-Computer Interfaces and Initial DEvelopment of a Repository of BCI Companies
    F Nijboer, BZ Allison, S Dunne, D Plass-Oude Bos, A Nijholt, P Haselager. Proc. of the 5th Int. BCI Conference, pages 1-4. Graz, 2011.
  4. Improving BCI performance after classification
    D Plass-Oude Bos, H Gürkök, B Reuderink, M Poel. Proc. of the 14th ACM ICMI, 2012.
  5. Perspectives on user experience evaluation of brain-computer interfaces
    B van de Laar, H Gürkök, D Plass-Oude Bos, F Nijboer, A Nijholt. Universal Access in Human-Computer Interaction, LNCS, 2011.

Most cited

  1. Turning shortcomings into challenges: Brain-computer interfaces for games
    A Nijholt, D Plass-Oude Bos, B Reuderink. Entertainment Computing 1 (2), 2009. [113]
  2. EEG-based emotion recognition - The Influence of Visual and Auditory Stimuli
    D Oude Bos. Capita Selecta (MSc course), University of Twente, 2006. [45]
  3. Brain-computer interfacing and games
    D Plass-Oude Bos, B Reuderink, B Laar, H Gürkök, C Mühl, M Poel, A Nijholt, D Heylen. Brain-Computer Interfaces, 2010. [38]
  4. BrainBasher: a BCI game
    D Oude Bos, B Reuderink. Ext. abstracts of Fun and Games 2008. [21]
  5. Bacteria Hunt: A multimodal, multiparadigm BCI game
    C Mühl, H Gürkök, D Plass-Oude Bos, ME Thurlings, L Scherffig, M Duvinage, et al., eNTERFACE 2010, Genua. [19]

Citation counts, in square brackets, from GScholar, Aug 2013. View complete listing of publications here.


UT Nieuws, Dec 3 2009.
Danny Plass and Bram van de Laar on Alpha World of Warcraft
TEDx Amsterdam Demo Video, 20 Nov 2009.
Alweer een innovatie op het gebied van gamen
Vara ConsumentenTV24, 5 June 2009.
Reportage: computerspel bestuurd door emoties
Radio 5: TELEAC Hoe?Zo!, 4 June 2009.
Actueel: met je humeur een computergame besturen
Radio 5: TELEAC Hoe?Zo!, 28 May 2009.
Using your mood to operate a computer game, May 28 2009.
Gamen met je hersenen
UT Nieuws, May 28 2009.
Met gedachten computer besturen
Telegraaf, May 16 2009.


New Venture Innovative Startup Competition
Top-20 in rounds 1 and 3, 2012-2013, with B. Reuderink.
STW Valorization Grant Phase 1, 2012.
25k to develop a proof of concept and business plan in half a year, with B. Reuderink.
Eniac Scriptieprijs 2009 Nomination
Ended up 4th place.
Best Demonstration Award at BrainGain Consortium 2009
AlphaWoW, with: Van de Laar, B.L.A.
Best Demonstration Award at BrainGain Consortium 2008
BrainBasher, with: Reuderink, B.
GALA Public and Jury Awards at IVA 2007, Paris
Trackside DEIRA, with: Knoppel, F. and Tigelaar, A. and Alofs, T.

BCI Colleagues

Boris Reuderink (now enterpreneur)
researches how to make BCIs more robust, with as goal to take the BCI from the lab into the real world
Christian Muehl (now at INRIA)
works on recognizing affect from EEG and physiological sensors for affective computing
Hayrettin Gurkok (now at Nedap)
conducts research on multimodality and realistic settings for BCIs
Bram van de Laar (now at ANT)
works on the effects of using brain-computer interfaces on user experience
Femke Nijboer
investigates how to best conduct ethical discussions about BCI with the public


If you are a student and interested in doing something with brain-computer interaction, feel free to contact us! There are numerous options, as you can see below.

For bachelor students

Art and mediatechnology (minor), bachelor referaat. Examples of bachelor referaat projects I've guided: Rene van den Berg, Egbert van der Veen, Teun van Hemert.

For master students

HMI project, Capita selecta, and the course Brain-computer interfaces which evolved from the HMI Seminar series on this topic. MSc projects I've been in the graduation committee of:
Bram van de Laar - Imaginary and actual movement in BCI gaming;
Gido Hakvoort - Immersion and affect in a BCI game;
Michel Obbink - Social interaction in a cooperative BCI game.

Up-close and personal

Ah... So you want to know more, eh?

Why BCI?

BCI is a very innovative field, which requires the integration of many different areas of research. I love this variety. The job of a PhD student is also very diverse, and you have a lot of freedom, so it is easy to stay motivated.


In 2009 I got married to Martijn Plass. We had already been together for a long time, so it was about time! Martijn is a game designer who started his own company, Catnip Games. Together we have a beautiful daughter, Anna.


I'm easily enthusiastic about many things. Here are a few of my hobbies: playing MMORPGs, music games, running, yoga, sewing, gardening, drawing, reading scifi (Frank Herbert), fantasy (George Martin), but also non-fiction.

© Danny Plass-Oude Bos 2008-2013