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Morphological ECG Analysis for Attention Detection

Carreiras, C. C. ; Lourenço, A. ; Aidos, H. ; Silva, H. ; Fred, A. L. N.

Morphological ECG Analysis for Attention Detection, Proc International Conf. on Neural Computation Theory and Applications - NTCA, Vilamoura, Portugal, Vol. ?, pp. ? - ?, September, 2013.

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The electroencephalogram (EEG) signal, acquired on the scalp, has been extensively used to understand cognitive function, and in particular attention. However, this type of signal has several drawbacks in a context
of Physiological Computing, being susceptible to noise and requiring the use of impractical head-mounted apparatuses, which impacts normal human-computer interaction. For these reasons, the electrocardiogram (ECG) has been proposed as an alternative source to assess emotion, which is also continuously available, and related with the psychophysiological state of the subject. In this paper we present a study focused on the morphological analysis of the ECG signal acquired from subjects performing a task demanding high levels of attention. The analysis is made using various unsupervised learning techniques, which are validated against evidence found in a previous study by our team, where EEG signals collected for the same task exhibit distinct patterns as the subjects progress in the task.