Second Opinion: Why we should worry about Big Tech’s investment in a new brain technology

This July scientists reported using a neural implant in a man’s brain to restore his ability to communicate. The man, known as Pancho, has been partially paralyzed and unable to produce intelligible speech since suffering a severe stroke in 2003.

The new technology records Pancho’s brain activity with an array of electrodes, analyzes the activity to detect the words he is trying to say and then translates those intentions into written words that can be displayed on a computer screen. It is the latest advance in the exploding field of brain-computer interfaces, or BCIs. Similar systems have made headlines

Read more

Your Brain Is Not a Computer. It Is a Transducer

Let’s start with my 95-year-old mom. Her memory is unreliable, but she’s still lucid, churns out sarcasm like a pro, and plays a lightning-fast game of double solitaire. Today I finally quit after she won seven games in a row, and, yes, I was trying my best.

She also hears music continuously, and it’s not the kind of music that drives us nuts when we can’t get a tune out of our head. She mainly hears original music, and she will sometimes try to hum or sing what she’s hearing. She says it’s coming from “the neighbors downstairs,” and it

Read more