CBS “60 MINUTES” INVESTIGATES MIND-READING MRIS | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

CBS “60 MINUTES” INVESTIGATES MIND-READING MRIS

BY B.N. FRANK
The ability to read people’s minds and emotions is now possible thanks to scientists at Carnegie Mellon University.

But who decides when it is absolutely necessary to read a person’s mind and emotions? Aren’t MRIs supposed to be used only when absolutely necessary?

From CBS 60 Minutes:

Ten years ago, Stahl first reported on a team of scientists from Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University who discovered a way to, in effect, read minds — to identify the thoughts of people inside an MRI scanner when they thought about simple objects like tools and dwellings. In the decade since, the team has dramatically expanded the types of thoughts it can identify in the brain to emotions, highly abstract concepts, foreign languages, and even suicidal thinking. Neuroscientist Marcel Just tells Stahl that being able to peer inside our brains to identify our thoughts is a whole new frontier for science: “It’s like being an astronomer when the first telescope is discovered, or being a biologist when the first microscope is developed.”

One of the most surprising discoveries, says Dr. Just, has been the fact that activity patterns in the brain when people think about even abstract ideas like spirituality, forgiveness and gossip, are common across people. They’re even the same when people think in different languages. To study emotions, Just asked acting students to conjure up different feelings while having their brains scanned. Again, results showed common patterns. “Each emotion had its own characteristic values and you could tell which one was which,” he tells Stahl. “Amazingly, it was common across people.”

To demonstrate, 60 Minutes associate producer Jaime Woods agreed to go into the MRI scanner and think about different scenarios for each of a series of emotions shown to her on a screen. For the word “disgust,” she says she thought about a person vomiting on her at a baseball game. The computer analyzed her brain patterns, compared them to those of others, and correctly identified her feeling as “disgust.” Says Just, “It’s funny isn’t it, because it’s so personal. We all think of our own thoughts as so individual, so intimate, how could anybody else’s thoughts be like mine? And they are.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One has to wonder; would such technology be a far better tool than is torture, to understand what an alleged "baddie" has been doing, or plans to do?!?

I would see that as a moral, and reasonable use of such a tool; but what about using it to eavesdrop on peoples' thoughts, when there has been zero consent to do so?!?

This kind of technology could morph into a "Minority Report"/Repression/Surveillance type of tool, in a heartbeat, and most probably will, in technologically adept societies.

The next step in this process, will be the rewiring of the human brain; and that ... is a very dangerous undertaking.

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