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The future is here: Brain-computer Interface Systems

Published: March 22, 2023 | Print Friendly and PDF
  Gab

As many know, I have written and spoken extensively about the dangers of transhumanism, also rebranded by the military as human augmentation or human enhancement. One of my more recent essays was titled Physicals, Virtuals, Machines and Overlords: Is the dark vision of a new caste system for the fourth revolution inevitable?

The constraints on this research currently lie solely with the informed consent and normal bioethics regulations needed on any clinical trial. In fact, the SIENNA report was commissioned to study the ethical guidelines of such research, and the report essentially falls back on the same regulatory processes currently in place, which can be found in my essay “Ethical Parameters for Human Enhancement?”.

The fact is that despite the current clinical trial processes already in place, these rapidly developing technologies fall under that old saying, “Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should do something.”

We do not need more guidelines or regulations that can be broken in times of duress or “public health emergencies” to decide whether these technologies are for the good of society or not. Such “process oriented” procedures miss the point.

What we need are politicians and/or governments to sit down, commission studies without conflict of interest from biotech and the military to determine if mankind will benefit from these inventions, or whether mankind is more likely to be harmed. We need a nationalized and globalized response, even a treaty, regarding the ever increasing emphasis on the evolution of human augmentation in our military and civilian life which is now an accepted reality. As a world, we can just say no. The world has rejected many technologies as too dangerous or morally wrong. Humankind has a choice to make. Let’s make that choice, let’s ban human augmentation or, at the very least, put restrictions on these technologies. True guidelines that assess benefit and risk to humankind. My bet is that a true assessment would shut down much of this research in its tracks.

Just think about all the decisions that the world has made because something is ethical. We don’t reuse the bodies of our dead for food or even fertilizer. We don’t generally allow incest. We don’t allow murder or human sacrifice or allow people to be used as unwilling organ transplants. The list goes on and on.

Even technologies have been banned because they have been determined to be morally or environmentally detrimental. In the USA, we almost never allow new dams on major rivers for hydro electric power. We don’t allow mustard gas to be used in war. Offensive biowarfare is not allowed. We have nuclear treaties. Human civilizations have shown that they can say no.

Likewise, many technologies have been determined to be too dangerous. At least for now, we do not allow our cars to be powered by nuclear fission. After the Hindenburg accident of 1937, the idea of hydrogen vessels for air travel was abandoned. Human society can and has said enough when technologies are not safe.

So, why is there so little push-back to the idea that altering humans for either individual, military or societal benefit is ok? Even though ethicists have been warning about the abuse and potential catastrophic consequences of these technologies for generations. Dystopian visions of the future abound with what the horrific consequences of these technologies could do to mankind. Yet still “we” persist.

As I have been tracking the evolution of these technologies, I was recently directed to news story in Science Daily quoted below.


But please watch this 3 minute video first on what researchers in the Defense and Space labs, University of Technology Sydney, AU have developed. This is biosensor technology that use thought control device operation, such as for robots and machines.

Mind-control robots a reality

 

March 20, 2023, Science Daily

Summary: University of Technology Sydney- Researchers have developed biosensor technology that will allow you to operate devices, such as robots and machines, solely through thought control.

Researchers from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) have developed biosensor technology that will allow you to operate devices, such as robots and machines, solely through thought control.
<RWM: note how the authors personalize this research - by using the personal pronoun “will allow YOU to.” Thus, selling YOU on the technology. Don’t fall for this marketing gimmick.”>

Researchers from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) have developed biosensor technology that will allow you to operate devices, such as robots and machines, solely through thought control.

The advanced brain-computer interface was developed by Distinguished Professor Chin-Teng Lin and Professor Francesca Iacopi, from the UTS Faculty of Engineering and IT, in collaboration with the Australian Army and Defence Innovation Hub.

As well as defence applications, the technology has significant potential in fields such as advanced manufacturing, aerospace and healthcare -- for example allowing people with a disability to control a wheelchair or operate prosthetics.

"The hands-free, voice-free technology works outside laboratory settings, anytime, anywhere. It makes interfaces such as consoles, keyboards, touchscreens and hand-gesture recognition redundant," said Professor Iacopi.

"By using cutting edge graphene material, combined with silicon, we were able to overcome issues of corrosion, durability and skin contact resistance, to develop the wearable dry sensors," she said.

A new study outlining the technology has just been published in the peer-reviewed journal ACS Applied Nano Materials. It shows that the graphene sensors developed at UTS are very conductive, easy to use and robust.

The hexagon patterned sensors are positioned over the back of the scalp, to detect brainwaves from the visual cortex. The sensors are resilient to harsh conditions so they can be used in extreme operating environments.

The user wears a head-mounted augmented reality lens which displays white flickering squares. By concentrating on a particular square, the brainwaves of the operator are picked up by the biosensor, and a decoder translates the signal into commands.

The technology was recently demonstrated by the Australian Army, where soldiers operated a Ghost Robotics quadruped robot using the brain-machine interface. The device allowed hands-free command of the robotic dog with up to 94% accuracy.

"Our technology can issue at least nine commands in two seconds. This means we have nine different kinds of commands and the operator can select one from those nine within that time period," Professor Lin said.


UTS research includes:

Brain-computer interfaces just took a big leap forward

Ever wanted to control a robot with your mind? Now you can, thanks to new UTS research in the field of human-robot interaction.
(RWM: Again the use of -”YOU” and “YOUR”>

Read more about this technology here.

From the University of Technology Sydney

We’re proud to host the NSW Defence Innovation Network and co-host the NSW Space Research Network. Our researchers work closely with the Defence Science and Technology Group, Australian Defence Force, US Defense, Primes and local SMEs. Partner with us to develop solutions for your research needs and access industry-recognised experts with world-class facilities.

This research is not about “YOU,” it is about warfare, it is about spy-craft and surveillance. It is being funded by our government (Sound familiar).

We can all think of a hundred ways this technology could be and will be abused, if developed. Yet who is evaluating these risks? Certainly, not the military as discussed in my essay, “"Human Augmentation – The Dawn of a New Paradigm.”


 

In the non-classified report from the UK Department of Defense, together with the Germany Office for Defence Planning , the report discusses the ethics of human augmentation

National interest

The imperative to use human augmentation may ultimately not be dictated by any explicit ethical argument, but by national interest. Countries may need to develop human augmentation or risk surrendering influence, prosperity and security to those who do. This possibility is encapsulated by investment in artificial intelligence and gene editing. Some countries are investing heavily into private artificial intelligence companies, with annual investments worth US $1 trillion by 2030.

Similarly, enormous funds are being invested in gene editing by countries with citizens who are more accepting of the technology. Countries that invest in artificial intelligence and gene editing now are likely to reap significant returns.

Public opinion, particularly in democracies, will be a major influence on a country’s willingness to embrace human augmentation but neither public opinion nor ethicists are likely to decide the future of human augmentation. Instead, it is likely to be decided by governments based on the national interests in terms of prosperity, safety and security.

The need to use human augmentation may ultimately be dictated by national interest.

Countries may need to develop and use human augmentation or risk surrendering influence, prosperity and security to those who will. National regulations dictating the pace and scope of scientific research reflect societal views, particularly in democracies that are more sensitive to public opinion. The future of human augmentation should not, however, be decided by ethicists or public opinion, although both will be important voices; rather, governments will need to develop a clear policy position that maximises the use of human augmentation in support of prosperity, safety and security, without undermining our values.

Governance in Western liberal societies and international institutions is already unable to keep pace with technological change and adoption of human augmentation will exacerbate this trend. National and international governance will be challenged by the myriad of implications of adopting human augmentation technologies. This could lead to a new arms race and inter- and intra-state tensions if not carefully managed through early and regular dialogue.

The report states:

six million years of evolution to where we are today and now we have the tools in our hands to decide how our continued evolution should be shaped”


There is a five alarm fire burning through our government, but who will put it out?


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