The brain is clearly one of the next great frontiers. In this World Economic Forum Article on reading minds, we get a glimpse into the exponential progression of brain science. The author cites research published by AI experts in China, the US and Japan showing that computers can replicate what people are thinking by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) machines that measure brain activity – linked to deep neural networks that replicate human brain functions.
Scientists at Carnegie Mellon University claim to have gone a step closer to reading minds by using algorithms to decode brain signals that identify deeper thoughts. According to the author, people like Elon Musk are excited by the opportunities such technologies could bring to the lives of people with disabilities. However, researchers and governments have yet to spell out how they can ensure these are used to benefit the human race rather than harm it.
This is part of a broader and very necessary Ethics discussion that can only be adequately addressed at a global level. However, despite rapid developments in brain science and related areas such as gene editing and human-machine convergence, a global agreement of what ethical and moral standards are needed in Our Emerging Future remains elusive.
With these advances in brain science, How will we Interact in the Future? Is human brain-to-brain communication a realizable vision in the not to distant future – and if so, what does it mean for us as a species?