Last Tuesday the former chancellor of the university, Cherie Booth visited our place of work in the School of Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University to see the labs in action. During our demo we were running two BioHarness chest-straps and the Enobio wireless EEG while myself (red/white shirt) and a volunteer (blue/white shirt) went head to head on Wii boxing.
Photos of the rest of the tour around the department can be found at LJMU’s Facebook page.
With respect to the BioHarness I’ve been somewhat disappointed by the data acquistion software (Acqknowledge 3.9) during wireless data acquistion as the product feels like it was is clearly designed for a wired environment. If any wireless data is dropped by the unit the software throws an error message which demands user input. While the data transmission may of been momentarily disrupted the software stops recording until the user acknowledges the error and restarts data collection. As such if your trying to conduct an experiment you lose time synchronisation given the software constructs a time series based on the number of samples its recevied (and the known sample rate) rather than the time the sample was received by the radio antenna.
A quick fix would be to have Acqknowledge treat the BioHarness in a similar fashion to the pulse oximeter and create a status line which indicates when packets are being dropped. For the moment if we want to conduct real-time work we have to be quick off the ball with the software and have the antenna positioned with direct line of sight with the BioHarness to minimise interference. If I had to guess I’d say this oversight in the software (for the singular sold units) is due to the designers experience in wired biosensors and as such they haven’t considered how common radio interference is.
If anyone has their TEAM software (aimed at supporting multiple users on a single radio antenna) I’d be interested to know whether or not this issue afflicts them.
On reflection, this post didn’t come out as well as it should of in short due to my own hastiness in posting it. While the technical issue is a valid concern I should of waited until I had a better picture of the problem from the technical team at BIOPAC who I was conversing with at the time. As such releasing this post without BIOPAC’s take was unfair on my part for which I apologise for. As to the current status of this issue, BIOPAC are aware of the problem and are currently trying to fix it.