News

We hacked the brain - 2014

Can we replay our dreams in the future? Will you be selling your brain capacity or outsource certain activities? Connect brains to become one super brain, extremely intuitive? Will our thoughts be marketing material in an age where an EEG machine displays what movie someone is watching?

Hack the Brain was the first gathering in Europe where experts joined to explore the opportunities of DIY brainhacking. Researchers, hackers, designers and artists came together during the weekend of 23-25 May 2014 to bring neuroscience to the next level, with the help of DIY Brainhacking. We organised a bootcamp, a debate and pitches of the best hacks. Hack the Brain is a yearly event.

In the days of Rembrandt we explored the body, now we explored the mind.

The best hacks 
The winner of the hackathon promises that people will be able to conciously experience and influence their dreams. A professional jury led by Jason Farquhar (Donders Institute) rewarded the best hack with 1000 euro and four MUSE EEG head bands. This winning concept came from the team Lucid Dreaming.

By providing the brains with small currents in is possible to influence the brain activity during the dream state. The brain activity is measured with an EEG device. "In the future therapists could possibly communicate with people who are dreaming", says Lisa Rombout, neuro scientist and member of the winning team. The other Lucid Dreaming members are Ot de Wiljes (neuro scientist and developer), Arjen Suijker (student Media and Technology) and Dennis Luijer (designer).

Background
New technological possibilities and the wide availability of soft- & hardware makes neuroscience - and our knowledge about the brain - more and more accessible. Waag Society, Total Active Media, Donders Institute and TNO see great opportunities and joined forces to hack the brain.

In the tradition of Rembrandt’s Anatomical Lesson, de Waag in Amsterdam turned into the nerve centre of DIY Brainhackers. Including a public debate with thought leaders, artists, neuromarketers, scientists and anyone interested. The debate on Friday featured writer Arnon Grunberg, scientist Pim Haselager, philosopher Désanne van Brederode, neuromarketing strategist Victor Lamme & more.

Hack the Brain is an annual event. Founding partners are Waag Society & Total Active Media. Partners are Donders Institute (Radboud University Nijmegen) and TNO. Hack the Brain 2014 was made possible by BrainGain, ClickNL, City of Amsterdam, Interaxon, Jonas Vorwerk, Neurensics, Fund Creative Industry, TMSI, VicarVision and Wirelab.