20 February 2008

Helmet of Mind-Computer Tightness

I dunno how many times this invention has been announced in various forms, but given today's running topic, the mind-controlled computer interface deserves a nod. A US/Australian company showed off a headset at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that lets you control a computer game with your thoughts:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7254078.stm (includes link to video demo)

If it works (the demo is not terribly impressive), then it would fundamentally change the way people use computers. No more carpal tunnel syndrome, for one thing. With computers in all of our everyday objects, we could control the world with our thoughts.

Competitive gamers would be the first to devolve into even more slothful beings. The skill set required by gamers today involves fine motor control and quick reactions, along with higher-level reasoning about game mechanics. But if you don't have to mouse and hit buttons with precision, today's champion gamers may lose their advantage to those who can merely sit there and think faster. A brain in a jar could totally pwn you in Halo. It follows logically that the same brain would decimate your third-world country's army using a small squad of remote-controlled robots.

Stupidity won't be the new intelligence if this comes to pass. You will gain great advantage from quick thinking. Physical laziness, however, would be the rule. And in that respect, we Americans are world leaders. I, for one, welcome our new fatass telekinetic overlords.


Pete said...

This demonstration perfectly illustrates my convoluted point from the previous post. It makes no difference if the person with the mind controlled computer can memorize info, because what will make that person more intelligent than others in the future is the speed and ability with which he access the information everyone shares. The helmet increases that speed and allows the player to not rely on basic motor skills, of course he is still forced to utilize motor skills at a cerebral level. Neurons must still fire in order to make the device react. This is what I am talking about by speed and access. A persons intelligence will be based on the speed and ability with which their brain manipulates machines. Not the ability to recall vast amounts of information.

Anyone getting this yet? Learning will be irrelevant because the time it takes for your brain to recall a fact will be replaced by accessing the collective information base. People will still need to learn things in order to progress with the sciences, but it will be irrelevant if the average joe can recall where the Sudan is located on a map because we will all be able to do it. It should be far more important to instill the ability to use machines quickly and effortlessly in our youth because in the future THE COMPUTER WILL BE INDISTINGUISHABLE FROM YOUR MIND! How about them apples...

The Becca said...

I, for one, welcome these steely helmet overlords.