Wednesday, October 12, 2011

UC Berkeley Scientists 'See' Movies in the Mind

California scientists have found a way to see through another person's eyes.
Researchers from UC Berkeley were able to reconstruct YouTube videos from viewers' brain activity -- a feat that might one day offer a glimpse into our dreams, memories and even fantasies.
"This is a major leap toward reconstructing internal imagery," said Jack Gallant, professor of psychology and coauthor of a study published today in Current Biology. "We are opening a window into the movies in our minds."

I gotta tell you something...this shit fascinates and scares the living hell out of me at the same time.  Sometimes, I think we’re reaching the point where technology is about to get out of our control.  That is, if we haven’t danced the La Bamba past that point already.  We’re not even considering the moral/social issues of these discoveries.  Not that we ever did.  Nope.  Just pick the two best cities and drop the bombs.  We’ll deal with the long term socio/economic impact some other time.  These days, though, it just seems like this shit is happening quicker and quicker.  Science fiction becoming science fact at an even faster clip.

One of the first things that came to mind (and if I was in that magnetic resonance imaging machine you probably would know this already) when I read the article was the movie Brainstorm.  Which is kinda funny, cause I was thinking about Brainstorm a few weeks ago.  And how much of a screwed up movie it is.  My ol’ man took me to see it when it was in the theaters.  Yea.  That’s right.  The theaters.  I was…12?  Let me tell you, that shit stuck with me.  Especially the ending when she died while wearing the device.  And it recorded her experience dying (Oh…don’t give me a hard time about spoiling anything.  It’s not like you were gonna go rent it.  Besides, it’s probably really dated at this point and not worth seeing.).  Ugh!  Man…talk about a mindfuck for a 12 year old.  Watching from a first person POV what happens when you die.  Yea.  That’ll leave a mark!  Thanks dad!

But…we’ll talk about my childhood traumas another time.  The possibilities for this discovery are endless.  How great would it be to make your own TV shows or movies using your thoughts/imagination?  Then beam them to your tv/monitor/iPad 3/whatever.  I kinda feel bad for the porn industry, though.  Cause something like that is gonna put them out of business.  I know.  I know.  I know what you were thinking when you read “your own TV shows or movies using your imagination”.  You were already tabbing through your library of dirty fantasies to see which ones you were beaming over to your tv/monitor/iPad 3/whatever first.

On the other hand, though, you know what “the man” is going to do with this kind of tech.  They’re gonna make devices that ping when you’re daydreaming. Forget Cheap Trick. Your boss or teacher or spouse is gonna have one of these devices.  And it’ll show them what you’re daydreaming.  Man!  How hard is that gonna suck? Especially if you’re recalling the porno you made last night.  There would be no friggin privacy!  It’s bad enough that the world is full of ghosts that see everything you do. Now we’re gonna have wives that can see our thoughts?!?!  WTF?!?!?  And don’t even tell me you’ve fooled yourself into thinking when the kids are in bed and you close the door to spend some quality time with yourself that you’ve got privacy?!?! Please!  Between the aliens, ghosts, spy satellites and your neighbor’s high powered telescopes that see through walls, you’ve got zero privacy.  Especially when you’re getting friendly with yourself.  Good luck trying to keep that thought from creeping in the next time you’re taking care of business. 

Ugh...nuts to all that.  Technology can go fuck itself.  Except for iPad 3, of course.  I want one of those. 

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