Yale Scientists Are Developing a Machine That Extracts Images From Your Mind
By Tiff Grandstaff
Scientist’s are Developing a Mind-Reading Machine that Can Read and Translate Your Thoughts Into Text, Including Images
A device that might make our internal monologues a thing of the past was just announced as being under development right here in the United States. This eavesdropping machine can actually hear the little voices inside your head and make them known to others.
The potentially dangerous mind-reading device is being developed by American and German scientists at Yale, with a study led by Professor Marvin Chun and designed by Alan Cowen, a PhD student at the university.
Their efforts are being combined to develop an advanced instrument that turns our secret thoughts into readable text and recognizable imagery. As stated recently in The Daily Mail, scientists on the project have the goal of reproducing audible speech using our inaudible brain functions, and they want to do it in real-time.
Widget not in any sidebars
Understanding the Mechanism
Electrodes are placed directly on the head correlating with the speech and language centers of the brain. This is all done while the subject is awake and alert. Electrical responses to various stimuli are monitored and measured by scientists and then matched with computer generated signals which correspond to distinct speech patterns.
While electrodes and underdeveloped technology currently limit the applications for the device, scientists are busily looking for the loopholes. Yale has even teamed up with UC Berkeley to determine how hearing, speaking, and imaging overlap in the brain, with Professor Robert Knight leading the team of researchers.
He stated in a recent interview,
We want to develop an implantable device that decodes the signals that occur in the brain when we think about a word, then turn these signals into a sound file that can be reproduced by a speech device.
With the device being planned for future implantation, it is not illogical to wonder what the real agenda is.
Knight was also quoted as saying, “Our ultimate goal is to create a small device that can be used in everyday life.” The device might sound like a dream come true for some, but for others the potential that the device might to get placed into the wrong hands is more than frightening, it’s downright creepy.
Questioning the Motives
Today’s typical brain scans already have the ability to create rudimentary pictures of what we are thinking and/or feeling, but this new machine is lightyears ahead. Recently, scientists were able to successfully translate and play back a word that their subject thought simply by monitoring their brain activity.
Furthermore, the device, which remains nameless at the moment, can actually view images that are stored deep inside your memory bank. While that might sound kind of amazing to some, it still begs the question as to what the purpose of such a machine might be for Americans in the future. As the envelope of neuro-telepathy gets continually pushed, our privacy is also being incessantly challenged.
Still, most innovations with the potential to invade our privacy come wrapped in a nice humanitarian cover story, and this one is no different. The Daily Mail reports that the machine is being developed to help sufferers of Lou Gehrig’s disease, Alzheimer’s, stroke, and dementia. The L.A. Times, though, is unabashedly claiming that the machine is being produced for the purposes of investigations involving facial reconstruction.
The Final Verdict
Whatever the case, the agreed upon goal is to communicate a person’s private thoughts via a video screen, electronic speaker, or word processor. Rest assured; this is only the beginning of the end of the Fifth Amendment, which outlines our right to remain silent.
If you think this sounds like science fiction, or the plot of Minority Report, you should know that there are already devices in use that can read your facial expressions or emotions in order to prevent car accidents and road rage.
Moreover, Fox News reported way back in 2008 that Homeland Security would attempt to detect terrorist activity by monitoring the intent of American citizens. In short, we might soon be incriminating ourselves without even trying, and it will be seen as acceptable under the guise of freedom, justice, safety, and medicine.