An oldie but a goodie.
Brain-pacemakers are being used to treat patients suffering from
severe depression and the potentials of the technology are being
expanded on. What happens when brain stimulation is safe and not
only reserved to people suffering from disorders?
“Brain pacemakers” are used to treat people who suffer from
epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, clinical depression and other
diseases. The pacemaker is a medical device that is implanted into
the brain to send electrical signals into the tissue.
For those of you who don’t know what they are the paragraph
above is the first sentence from the wikipedia article and as you
can see the treatment the technology provides is quite vast and
Lets look down the winding road a little bit and consider what a
world it would be like if these pacemakers become easy to implant
and remove self maintaining and powering. A nanobot for
stimulation?! what scientist would dare consider such a thing.
Well i found an article a while back in wired which had this to
Implant Achieves Female Orgasm
One woman undergoing treatment for back pain may have
discovered a cure for the thousands of woman frustrated by the
inability to achieve orgasm. While Dr. Stuart Meloy was putting an
electrode into the woman’s spine in an attempt to ease her chronic
pain, he not only reduced her back pain, but gave her an unexpected
– but delightful – side-effect. (cont.)
“She said, ‘You’re going to have to teach my husband how to
do that’,” Meloy, an anesthesiologist and pain specialist in
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, said. The discovery is published in
Wednesday’s issue of New Scientist.
Recently Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute created
an artificial intelligence program to run within the platform of
Second Life. The researchers are studying the interactions that
occur with real people through
their avatars. The RPI students created
the program to maneuver the avatar and understand some fairly
straight forward questions, asked in English.
Operators of Second Life don’t seem concerned about
synthetic agents lurking in their world. John Lester, Boston
operations manager for Linden Lab, said the San Francisco-based
company sees a fascinating opportunity for AI to evolve. “I think
the real future for this is when people take these AI-controlled
avatars and let them free in ‘Second Life,’” Lester said, ” ... let
them randomly walk the grid.”
With AI characters within a grid of tens of thousands of active
users the social experimentation is nearly limitless. Social
scientists can examine certain behaviors and even provoke them
through the AI interface. Most interesting is if the AI can
recognize and then smoothly translate languages the program could
create cultural bridges and even examine cultural behavior
By Dick Pelletier
Technology promises radical change in relationships.
We are in the midst of a sea of change, in which not only are
many traditional relationships failing, but unexpected new
arrangements are beginning to appear; gay marriages are becoming
increasingly popular, and many people are consciously choosing to
live alone. How does technology affect relationships? Telephones,
cameras, and camcorders have long been instrumental in bringing
people together. Today, many spend time chatting on the phone or
the Internet – trying to develop or strengthen friendships.
Now technology is entering a bold, but controversial new step.
In the UK, University of Redding’s Kevin Warwick, and his wife
Irena will soon link their emotions together with chip implants.
Tiny silicon chips will enable the couple to “read” each other’s
feelings wherever they are. Every feeling – positive and negative –
will be shared.
This technology will not be endorsed by everyone. Many believe
sharing every feeling is too invasive – some feelings need to be
private. But we live in a time when over half of all marriages end
in divorce, so researchers in their search to fill needs, examine
where technologies might help. (cont.)
By Dick Pelletier
Mitsubishi’s latest entry into the world of mega-profits
includes “Wakamaru”, a child-shaped robot that can recognize and
talk with 10 different people. Priced at $14,300, this clever
creature has a vocabulary of 10,000 words, and can become companion
to seniors, playmate to children, or a loving and helpful devoted
family servant. Today, robots can make decisions about where to go and
what to do, and although, they cannot yet make feelings, they can
show them. Ignore or abuse a robot, and it becomes surly and
withdrawn. Shower it with love and attention, and it blushes and
makes happy smiles.
Now, developers say, robots can have feelings. U.S. Military’s
DARPA recently awarded a contract to
create a robotic system that can read manuals and explain them to
humans. Recognizing that humans become frustrated when taking
orders from robotic systems, researchers decided to program human
nature and nurturing traits into their creation.
These included human examples of early childhood memories, first
love during puberty, and intense stress situations of danger and
competition. The final robotic system exhibited more friendliness
and compassion, and evoked fewer hostile feelings. (cont.)
By Melanie Swan
This piece was originally posted here
on Melanie’s blog Broader Perspective.
The potential replacement of humans by robots
for love and sex is not shocking, it is preferable. It could be
more satisfying for everyone, sexually and emotionally. Just as the
simultaneous relationships of polyamory require a more mature level
of self-knowledge and interpersonal communication, so too could
synthetic partners take human skill sets to a whole new level. What
would it be like to have a relationship with an AI that knows you
better than you know yourself?
Sex with robots is far more efficient, it avoids the whole
search problem and many other problems. Randomness, variability,
and exploration are lauded, applauded and possible, not shunned and
shamed. Not to mention far more acceptable than being gay or
non-mainstream sexually in any way in current society.
Adios taboos. How could sex with robots be avoidable in a
society demanding ever higher levels of self-expression and
There are too many other dynamics in interhuman relationships
for ongoing sexual fulfillment, a quick glance at craigslist will
easily confirm this. Sex could become like going to the bathroom,
something most people prefer to do alone without other humans
around. It is very personal.