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Sensors 2013, 13(4), 5099-5108; https://doi.org/10.3390/s130405099

A Low-Cost, Computer-Interfaced Drawing Pad for fMRI Studies of Dysgraphia and Dyslexia

1
Instrument Development Lab, Center on Human Development and Disability, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
2
Integrated Brain Imaging Center, Department of Radiology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 March 2013 / Revised: 10 April 2013 / Accepted: 11 April 2013 / Published: 17 April 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medical & Biological Imaging)
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Abstract

We have developed a pen and writing tablet for use by subjects during fMRI scanning. The pen consists of two jacketed, multi-mode optical fibers routed to the tip of a hollowed-out ball-point pen. The pen has been further modified by addition of a plastic plate to maintain a perpendicular pen-tablet orientation. The tablet is simply a non-metallic frame holding a paper print of continuously varying color gradients. The optical fibers are routed out of the MRI bore to a light-tight box in an adjacent control room. Within the box, light from a high intensity LED is coupled into one of the fibers, while the other fiber abuts a color sensor. Light from the LED exits the pen tip, illuminating a small spot on the tablet, and the resulting reflected light is routed to the color sensor. Given a lookup table of position for each color on the tablet, the coordinates of the pen on the tablet may be displayed and digitized in real-time. While simple and inexpensive, the system achieves sufficient resolution to grade writing tasks testing dysgraphic and dyslexic phenomena. View Full-Text
Keywords: fMRI; MRI-compatible; dygraphia; dyslexia; lexical; handwriting; LabVIEW fMRI; MRI-compatible; dygraphia; dyslexia; lexical; handwriting; LabVIEW
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).
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Reitz, F.; Richards, T.; Wu, K.; Boord, P.; Askren, M.; Lewis, T.; Berninger, V. A Low-Cost, Computer-Interfaced Drawing Pad for fMRI Studies of Dysgraphia and Dyslexia. Sensors 2013, 13, 5099-5108.

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