Biosignal

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Biosignal is a summarizing term for all kinds of signals that can be (continually) measured and monitored from biological beings. The term biosignal is often used to mean bio-electrical signal but in fact, biosignal refers to both electrical and non-electrical signals.

Electrical biosignals (“bio-electrical” signals) are usually taken to be (changes in) electric currents produced by the sum of electrical potential differences across a specialized tissue, organ or cell system like the nervous system. Thus, among the best-known bio-electrical signals are the

EEG, ECG, EOG and EMG are measured with a Differential amplifier which registers the difference between two electrodes attached to the skin. However, the galvanic skin response measures electrical resistance and the MEG measures the Magnetic field induced by electrical currents (Electroencephalogram) of the brain.

Electrical currents and changes in electrical resistances across tissues can also be measured from plants.

Bio-signals may also refer to any non-electrical signal that is capable of being monitored from biological beings, such as mechanical signals (e.g. the mechanomyogram or MMG), acoustic signals (e.g. phonetic and non-phonetic utterances, breathing), chemical signals (e.g. pH, oxygenation) and optical signals (e.g. movements).

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Use in Artistic Contexts[edit]

In recent years, the use of biosignals has gained interest amongst an international artistic community of performers and composers who use biosignals to produce and control sound. Research and practice in the field go back decades in various forms (Brouse 2012; Ortiz 2012) and have lately been enjoying a resurgence, thanks to the increasing availability of more affordable and less cumbersome technologies (Lopes and chippewa 2012). An entire issue of eContact!, published by the Canadian Electroacoustic Community in July 2012, was dedicated to this subject, with contributions from the key figures in the domain.[1]

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