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Displaying Images Directly From The Brain

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The Pink Tentacle blog writes (update: currently getting a quota exceeded message there):

Researchers from Japan’s ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories have developed new brain analysis technology that can reconstruct the images inside a person’s mind and display them on a computer monitor, it was announced on December 11. According to the researchers, further development of the technology may soon make it possible to view other people’s dreams while they sleep.

The scientists were able to reconstruct various images viewed by a person by analyzing changes in their cerebral blood flow. Using a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) machine, the researchers first mapped the blood flow changes that occurred in the cerebral visual cortex as subjects viewed various images held in front of their eyes. Subjects were shown 400 random 10 x 10 pixel black-and-white images for a period of 12 seconds each. While the fMRI machine monitored the changes in brain activity, a computer crunched the data and learned to associate the various changes in brain activity with the different image designs.

Then, when the test subjects were shown a completely new set of images, such as the letters N-E-U-R-O-N, the system was able to reconstruct and display what the test subjects were viewing based solely on their brain activity.

(Utopic and dystopic scenarios: leasing parts of your brain space to a big corporation for a side income; building a problem solving computer based on low level brain growing farm; big brother supervising thoughts to crack down on dissidents; drawing tools; advanced lie detectors; brain exporting and importing of movies, smells, feelings…)

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Displaying Images Directly From The Brain
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