Decoding intention: A neuroergonomic perspective

Decoding the intentions of other people based on non-linguistic cues such as their body movement is a major requirement of many jobs. Whether it is maintaining security at an airport or negotiating with locals in a foreign country, there is a need to maximize the effectiveness of training or real-time performance in this decoding process. This review considers the potential utility of neuroergonomic solutions, and in particular, of electroencephalographic (EEG) methods for augmenting action understanding. Focus is given to body movements and hand–object interactions, where there is a rapid growth in relevant science. The interpretation of EEG-based signals is reinforced by a consideration of functional magnetic resonance imaging experiments demonstrating underlying brain mechanisms that support goal oriented action. While no EEG method is currently implemented as a practical application for enhancing the understanding of unspoken intentions, there are a number of promising approaches that merit further development.

S. Grafton and C. Tipper
Volume: 59
Number: 1
Pages: 14–24
Date: January, 2012
ICB Affiliated Authors: Scott T Grafton