28 May 2009

Better Zombies Through Sound Science

Scientists at the University of Illinois have taken science one step closer to the ability to control human minds remotely -- in this case using highly focused ultrasound.
Theorists have been working on materials that bend sound waves backward for several years. Such a metamaterial has now been built by Nicholas Fang, an assistant professor of mechanical science and engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His group's sound-focusing device is an aluminum array of narrow-necked resonant cavities whose dimensions are tuned to interact with ultrasound waves. The cavities are filled with water. Fang likens them to an array of wind instruments, such as the pipes in an organ. When ultrasound waves move through the array, the cavities resonate so that the sound is focused. The cavities "work together to refract the sound," says Fang. _TechnologyReview
Arizona State University scientists had previously demonstrated the ability to penetrate the skull using pulses of ultrasound capable of affecting brain activity.
One prior stumbling block to using ultrasound noninvasively in the brain has been the skull. However, the acoustic frequencies utilized by Tyler and his colleagues to construct their pulsed ultrasound waveforms, overlap with a frequency range where optimal energy gains are achieved between transcranial transmission and brain absorption of ultrasound – which allows the ultrasound to penetrate bone and yet prevent damage to the soft tissues. Their findings are supported by other studies examining the potential of high-intensity focused ultrasound for ablating brain tissues, where it was shown that low-frequency ultrasound could be focused through human skulls. _ASU
Combining the earlier findings with more powerful ultrasound lenses will allow scientists to achieve more focused penetration of the skull from greater distances -- to more precise effect.

Brain stimulation can both increase and decrease the neural activity of the targeted brain areas. A complex target pattern simultaneously utilising excitatory and inhibitory stimuli could theoretically lead a previously mapped brain into a somnambulatory or "waking dream" state. From that point, it should be but a short distance to the creation of a programmed mind, or zombie.

The holy grail of kings, priests, and con-men throughout history has been the ability to control the minds of the masses. Modern media tools have helped demagogues and grifters to project their charisma into susceptible souls, but that is not genuine mind-control. Only willing fish are enmeshed in the feeble nets of mainstream electronic media. With a tool capable of influencing minds unaware, the demagogue can now move into full-fledged mental entrapment of the unwilling.

Sheer speculation? Certainly. But then, speculation is how the mind stays ahead of other minds that may not have our best interests at heart.
When asked about the potential of using his groups’ methods to remotely control brain activity, Tyler says: “One might be able to envision potential applications ranging from medical interventions to use in video gaming or the creation of artificial memories along the lines of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character in ‘Total Recall.’ Imagine taking a vacation without actually going anywhere? ASU
If the mind can imagine something, and conceive of a feasible pathway to achieve it, it will be done as long as the will and the means are provided -- given time.


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

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Thursday, 28 May, 2009  
Blogger al fin said...

You can count on some sort of remote neural stimulation in the future. In fact, we already have it. But it will get more sophisticated than telepromptered speeches by satellite before long.

The US government has been far too big for a very long time. We had to wait until now for the news and entertainment media to whole-heartedly join an ever-expansive government to go for such a blatant grab for power.

This brave new junta really needs effective tools of brain control, but I suspect they will be undone by their own premature hubris and arrogance.

If only they had waited "a few more years ...."

Saturday, 30 May, 2009  

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