EpiBOX: An Automated Platform for Long-Term Biosignal Collection

Front Neuroinform. 2022 May 23;16:837278. doi: 10.3389/fninf.2022.837278. eCollection 2022.


Biosignals represent a first-line source of information to understand the behavior and state of human biological systems, often used in machine learning problems. However, the development of healthcare-related algorithms that are both personalized and robust requires the collection of large volumes of data to capture representative instances of all possible states. While the rise of flexible biosignal acquisition solutions has enabled the expedition of data collection, they often require complicated frameworks or do not provide the customization required in some research contexts. As such, EpiBOX was developed as an open-source, standalone, and automated platform that enables the long-term acquisition of biosignals, passable to be operated by individuals with low technological proficiency. In particular, in this paper, we present an in-depth explanation of the framework, methods for the evaluation of its performance, and the corresponding findings regarding the perspective of the end-user. The impact of the network connection on data transfer latency was studied, demonstrating innocuous latency values for reasonable signal strengths and manageable latency values even when the connection was unstable. Moreover, performance profiling of the EpiBOX user interface (mobile application) indicates a suitable performance in all aspects, providing an encouraging outlook on adherence to the system. Finally, the experience of our research group is described as a use case, indicating a promising outlook regarding the use of the EpiBOX framework within similar contexts. As a byproduct of these features, our hope is that by empowering physicians, technicians, and monitored subjects to supervise the biosignal collection process, we enable researchers to scale biosignal collection.

Keywords: biosignals; data collection; data visualization; health research; mobile technologies; remote health.