By Michael Godfrey Bell, 2015
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A fictional account, set in 2130, of what life might be like in cyberspace, based on the ideas of Agent Human. Eight young people challenge the status quo by exploring group consciousness, something forbidden by the authorities, who try to 'wipe' them and destroy their legacy human bodies.
To read We, Immortals: The Future Of The Mind on-line, just click here.
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The Collective Unconscious, Quantum Mechanics and PSI
Many current researchers into the inner and outer reaches of the human psyche do not attempt to construct an over-arching theory of the mind, and who can blame them, given the confusing mass of unexplained and contradictory data they face? Still, some people try, and a surprising number of them arrive at some type of 'field' theory, in which we, and all of our compeers, exist as islands in a pervasive sea which we but dimply experience.
This book attempts to record some of the more notable recent attempts at analysis of the mysteries that surround us, and reaches some tentative conclusions based on the inadequate evidence that exists so far. They are remarkable enough.
read it on-line, go to http://www.agenthuman.com/quantum/
Work carried out by a team of physicians and scientists at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, and reported in November at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, has demonstrated advances in the technology by which a 'locked-in' subject can communicate with the outside world. Electrodes placed onto the cortex beneath the skull and linked wirelessly to an external tablet computer allow the subject to select individual letters from an alphabetic array at the rate of more than one per minute. Previous devices using an infra-red camera to track eye movements were slower and less convenient, having to be operated in a specialized environment, while this new technique can be employed at home. Placement on the cortical matter rather than within it is said to be less intrusive and carry less risk of infection.
There have been numerous reports over the last few years of mental bio-electronic control of external devices, or bodily prostheses, employing a variety of different techniques to convert neural signals into motor commands, and the technology is advancing rapidly. Many crippled or paralyzed people are benefitting from such techniques. This new work is remarkable enough, but what it demonstrates most vividly is just how far away we are from being able to replicate the brain's neural mechanisms in a digital environment. Without impugning the expertise of researchers in this field, or the brilliant results they have unexpectedly been achieving, the fact of the matter is that we are at a most primitive level of attainment, whether in terms of implants that mirror and/or participate in mental functions, or in terms of the creation of neural digital assemblies outside the brain.
Read previous consciousness blogs:
Talking to yourself is not crazy, 30 November 2009
The future of human evolution, 05 December 2009
Testosterone, 15 December 2009
Self, 03 January 2010
Attention, 20 March 2010
Emotions, 01 May 2010
Face 16 May 2010
Trust 25 July 2010
Dancing 13 November 2011
Copying 20 May 2012
Altruism 15 July 2012
Brain Clone 10 March 2013
Decisions 30 March 2013
Only Connect 13 April 2013
Language 08 September 2013
Unconscious 19 October 2013
Booze 30 November 2013
Tether Hypothesis 12 January 2014
Spite 16 February 2014
Mating 08 June 2014
Brainy 22 August 2014
Fire 22 October 2014
Multibrains 12 July 2015
Disentangling Entanglement 15 September 2015
Free Will 9 January 2016
Faces 09 June 2016
Reflections 28 July 2016
Ironic 19 October 2016
31 October 2016
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This may offer a degree of comfort to those who fear the imminent advent of artificially intelligent robots. When robots or AI 'brains' simulate human mental activity they are doing so by applying large amounts of computing power and highly intricate software to construct outcomes which parallel or even exceed the results of human thought processes only in certain highly circumscribed respects, as witness the inability of such 'personal digital assistants' as Siri, Cortana or Alexa to pass the Turing test in the estimation of their questioners, useful as they may be for booking restaurants. We are very far away from having the technical wherewithal to create a 'clone' of human intelligence. This not to say that a robotic super-intelligence will not or could not arise. It both can and will come to pass. It is just to say that such a moment is much farther away than many people seem to fear.