Tag Archives: neuro

A feasibility analysis of neural interfaces and controllers

from h+ Magazine:

As human neural networks and electronic digital networks converge there is some debate over how to best move data from neural to digital formats.

Since the human brain is equipped with high-resolution sensory organs, there are many obvious routes for digital-to-neural input, but organic systems lack sufficient neural outputs for porting thoughts, memories, and dreams directly to digital memory.

“Like neurons in the brain”: A molecular computer that evolves

from h+ Magazine: (Previously covered here)

The press release from Michigan Tech asserts that it is “the first time a brain-like ‘evolutionary circuit’ has been realized.”

His new molecular computer uses an organic molecular layer and can evolve to solve complex problems, similar to neurons. Like the human brain — and unlike any existing computer — the tiny molecular computer heals itself if there is a defect.

Anirban Bandyopadhyay, from the Japanese National Institute for Materials Science, explains: “No existing man-made computer has this property, but our brain does. If a neuron dies, another neuron takes over its function.”

A Map for the Programmable World

by Chris  Arkenberg, URBEINGRECORDED.com:

IFTF recently published the map for When Everything is Programmable. I did the research & forecast for Neuroprogramming and contributed to Combinatorial Manufacturing. For Neuroprogramming, I focused on brain-computer interface technology in medical, military, and futuretainment. I was, frankly, amazed at just how much rapid development is happening in the field (and how much money is moving through it, as well).

Perhaps surprisingly, Neuroprogramming looks much closer than the molecular construction I researched for Combinatorial Manufacturing. The promise of Drexler et al still seems to be a ways off but Claytronics offers a really compelling path towards programmable matter.

Researchers develop new brain-like molecular processor

from ZDnet:

An international research team from Japan and Michigan Technological University have demonstrated a molecular circuit that can evolve continuously to solve complex problems that challenge today’s supercomputers.

The massively parallel circuit contains a layer of molecular switches (monolayer) that simultaneously interact in a manner similar to the information processing performed by the neurons in the human brain. That is, they can evolve to tackle complex problems. That’s because information processing circuits in digital computers are static, and operate serially.

Nanotechnology’s road to artificial brains

from Nanowerk:

If you think that building an artificial human brain is science fiction, you are probably right – for now. But don’t think for a moment that researchers are not working hard on laying the foundations for what is called neuromorphic engineering – a new interdisciplinary discipline that includes nanotechnologies and whose goal is to design artificial neural systems with physical architectures similar to biological nervous systems.

One of the key components of any neuromorphic effort is the design of artificial synapses. The human brain contains vastly more synapses than neurons – by a factor of about 10,000 – and therefore it is necessary to develop a nanoscale, low power, synapse-like device if scientists want to scale neuromorphic circuits towards the human brain level.

‘Think-dial’ on your thought-controlled iPhone

from h+ Magazine:

Don your telepathic headset and plug into your iPhone. Want to call your friend? Just look at her picture and think about her.

A new iPhone app described in the MIT Technology Review blog developed by Tanzeem Choudhury, Rajeev Raizada, Andrew Campbell and others at Dartmouth College lets you “wink” or “think dial” your relative or friend when his or her photo appears on an iPhone.

‘Mind-reading’ brain-scan software showcased in NY

from Physorg:

Software that uses brain scans to determine what items people are thinking about was among the technological innovations showcased Wednesday byIntel Corp., which drew back the curtain on a number of projects that are still under development.

The software analyzes functional MRI scans to determine what parts of a person’s brain is being activated as he or she thinks. In tests, it guessed with 90 percent accuracy which of two words a person was thinking about, said Intel Labs researcher Dean Pomerleau.

Eventually, the technology could help the severely physically disabled to communicate. And Pomerleau sees it as an early step toward one day being able to control technology with our minds.

Utopia or Dystopia? “Control technology with our minds”? – or controlling our minds with technology?

Are we zeroing in on the hard problem of explaining consciousness?

from h+ Magazine:

Consciousness is the “hard problem” in mind science: explaining how the astonishing private world of consciousness emerges from neuronal activity.

Recent research using EEG (brain-wave sensing) and fMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging) measurements by Steven Laureys of the University of Liege offers evidence for the “global workspace theory,” and may also offer clues to the “hard problem” of how patterns of electrical activity give rise to our complex internal lives.

The global workspace model of consciousness, proposed by Bernard Baars, an Affiliated Research Fellow of The Neurosciences Institute in San Diego, California, proposes that perceptions below the threshold of consciousness are processed in relatively small, local areas of the brain. Broadcasting this pre-conscious information to the global workspace — a network of neural regions — results in conscious experience.

“Wet computer” that mimics neurons to be created

from whatisartificialintelligence.com:

The project “Wet computer” also known as Chemical or Molecular computing is a form of computational model that mimics the characteristics of the human cells, particularly the brain cells called neurons.

As described by Dr. Klaus-Peter Zauner, project collaborator of the University of Southampton, “wet computer” takes advantage of the lipid-forming characteristic of stable “cells” that forms a coating spontaneously and uses chemistry to establish interactions among these cells similar to that of human neurons.

EOT Report #1: “Fixing Cognitive Biases to Shape the Next Generation of Humans“

Edge of Tomorrow Report - 3.25.2010
an interview with João Fabiano (translated from Portuguese)
by Carlos R. B. Azevedo (@crbazevedo)

João Fabiano is a journalist, philosopher, specialist on cognitive bias, and the founding member of the Analytical Philosophy research group of Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil.

Click here for the interview and commentary.

Photographic Memory coming soon in pill form

from Gizmondo:

Researchers have discovered that increasing production of a protein called RGS-14 could significantly boost visual memory.

Mice with the RGS-14 boost could remember objects they had seen for up to two months. Ordinarily the same mice would only be able to remember these objects for about an hour.

Video: Light-controlled mouse brain

from Singularity Hub:

What do you get when you combine microorganisms and fiber optics? Mind control over mice and rats.

A fiber optic cable is connected into a living mouse or rat with the spliced genes allowing scientists to expose different neurons to different lights.

Brain scans reveal what you are remembering

from io9:

10 subjects were shown three film clips multiple times, then asked to remember them while inside the fMRI scanner. It turned out to be relatively easy to trace the neurological pathway between viewing something and putting the memory into short-term storage in the hippocampus.

Above you can see a “heat map” of which parts of the hippocampus are active as memories get stored. Using specialized software, the researchers could detect and decode each memory.

Telepathic computer can read your mind

from Telegraph.uk:

Telepathy has taken a step closer to reality after British scientists developed a computer that can read your thoughts.

The system is able to decipher thought patterns and tell what people are thinking simply by scanning the brain.The breakthrough is a step forward because it can delve into people’s memories and differentiate between different recollections.

Intendix Brain-Computer Interface goes commercial

from Singularity Hub:

The world’s first patient-ready and commercially available brain computer interface just arrived at CeBIT 2010.

The Intendix from Guger Technologies (g*tec) is a system that uses an EEG cap to measure brain activity in order to let you type with your thoughts.

Video: BCI lets you play pinball with your mind

“Berlin Brain-Computer Interface Live demonstration of a brain-controlled Adams Family pinball machine by imagined movements at the CeBit IT fair 2010 in Hannover.”

Video: ‘Second Life’ controlled w/ brain-computer interface

Personal Memory Devices (PMDs) could capture & upload all 1st-person memories

from h+ Magazine:

Data captured by the PMD would be linked over the internet into distributed software services like GPS, Google Maps, facial recognition, speech/text recognition, brainwave analysis and so on.

Would the PMD remember where you parked? Always.

Will it warn you when you are about to walk away and leave your hat and sunglasses on the bench behind you? Totally.

Will it send you birthday reminders, schedule your meetings, remind you to pick up your dry-cleaning and let you program your DVR with voice commands? Yes.

Will it find your car keys and remote control for you? Maybe.

Will it record your innermost thoughts? Probably not.

It won’t always be perfect, but it will greatly extend your normal range of memory, and over time it will become like an indispensable part of your brain.

Portable brain-computer interfaces advance w/ reconstructed 3D hand motions

from The Society for Neuroscience:

Researchers have successfully reconstructed 3-D hand motions from brain signals recorded in a non-invasive way, according to a study in the March 3 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.

This finding uses a technique that may open new doors for portable brain-computer interface systems. Such a non-invasive system could potentially operate a robotic arm or motorized wheelchair — a huge advance for people with disabilities or paralysis.

New sensors built using nanotech could read and write information directly into the brain

from EVOKER:

Telecommunications researchers in Japan are attempting to create electronic sensors that can not only receive information from the brain, but could manipulate our neural pathways.

“Establishing connections between the brain and electrical instruments is important for understanding how the brain works and for controlling neural activity,” says Torimitsu, who heads NTT’s Molecular and Bioscience Group.