Alberta-developed device helps mobility-challenged kids turn thoughts into action – GLOBAL

November 28, 2022

The first time Claire Sonnenberg made a light switch on, using just her thoughts alone, her face lit up as well.

“Her smile just said it all,” Claire’s mother, Stephanie Sonnerberg, recalls.

The six-year-old Calgary girl was born with cerebral palsy. She isn’t able to speak and a lot of movements are challenging as well.

“It can be very hard to watch because she has so much to say and she wants to do so much, but her body and diagnosis really limits how she can get her movements out and her words across,” says Stephanie Sonnenberg.

Children like Claire have access to a number of options when it comes to adaptive technology.

The technology can rely on small hand movements or read little directions from the child’s eyes. The Thank2Switch device, developed by researchers at the Universities of Calgary and Alberta, uses brain-computer interface (BCI) technology to turn a child’s thoughts into action.

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