Because it is based on a framework whose services can support any BCI implementation, the use of BCI2000 provides maximum benefit to comprehensive research programs that operate multiple BCI2000 installations to collect data for a variety of studies. The most important benefits of the system in such situations are:
A Proven Solution
BCI2000 comes out of the box with proven support for different data acquisition hardware, signal processing routines, and experimental paradigms. These implementations have been in use in many different laboratories, clinical environments, and patients’ homes and have shown robust and stable performance with different operating formats. It is easy to adapt the system to your needs; many of these adaptations do not require programming.
Facilitates Operation of Research Programs
A number of tools allow for rapid prototyping of experimental paradigms. However, such prototypes are usually specific to a particular data acquisition board and/or PC configuration, data storage format, and experimental paradigm. Thus, the use of these systems is in practice often limited to individual sets of experiments run by one person. This situation impedes the setting up of research programs in which different types of experiments are run by different people with different types of equipment. As an example of a typical situation: have you ever tried to re-use software components that a student wrote a couple years ago or to re-analyze the data that he/she collected? BCI2000 stores data in a common format that incorporates all event markers and system configuration. Taking advantage of these features, BCI2000 has been facilitating large-scale research programs, as well as collaborative efforts, for many years.
Facilitates Deployment in Multiple Sites
The BCI2000 system does not rely on 3rd-party software components for its operation. Even for compilation, the system only requires affordable or free C++ compilers. Thus, both development and deployment of BCI2000 on multiple computers in potentially multiple sites is very economical. In contrast, appropriate licenses for third-party software (e.g., Matlab and Simulink) that are needed for other solutions can often cost more than US$ 10,000 per installed computer.
Cross-Platform and Cross-Compiler Compatibility
Earlier versions of BCI2000 required Borland's C++ Builder or Development Studio for compilation. Beginning with BCI2000 V3.0, BCI2000 also supports compilation with VisualStudio and MinGW.
The use of BCI2000 is free for academic and research institutions. We do not place any restrictions on how you may use the BCI2000 system, e.g., whether or not you share your software additions or your research results with us or with the community.
Remember, the main purpose of BCI2000 is to facilitate your research!