PLAYING DARPA: THE GLOBAL (RAT’S) BRAINMarch 16, 2013
Around the turn of the last century, that scientific genius of all scientific geniuses, Nikola Tesla, prophesied of the creation of a vast electronic global network, beaming information from any point on the globe, to any other point. He called it a "global brain," suggesting an emergent "group consciousness" that resulted from the ability of individual humans to connect with each other directly.
In short, Tesla foresaw the Internet.
More recently, co-author Scott deHart and I wrote about the Frankenstein possibilities of human-machine interfaces in Transhumanism: A Grimoire of Alchemical Agendas, and how these, in their turn, might be wired into the internet as well, creating an exponentially more powerful version of what Tesla long ago prophesied. Well, it seems the Victor Frankensteins at DARPA have taken another step in that direction:
The goal of all this, supposedly, is to link human minds in ways that a human intelligence group can solve problems more easily than an individual:
"By linking human brains together, scientists believe they can combine brainpower to solve problems that are too difficult for one person to handle alone, Duke University Medical Center neurobiologist Miguel Nicolelis told Reuters. Nicolelis refers to this link as an “organic computer”, and said scientists will first test it out on monkeys to determine its feasibility."
In other words, today rats, tomorrow primates, and the day after tomorrow, humans. What we're looking at here, I submit, is a kind of secularized, transhumanist version of the communio sanctorum, the "communion of the saints," that mystical eschatological state in Christian doctrine wherein all (sanctified) humans are in a state of absolute individuality and yet absolute communion in love with each other. Many in person, one in intention, thought, and will.
We might call this technological state of affairs the communionem homines, the "communion of humans" brought about by such technological means.
All of which prompts a question, and with the question, an emergent field of scientific exploration in psychology and sociology: to what extent, in such a network, does one retain one's individual identity and personality? Such questions, of course, have already occurred to the rats running their mazes at DARPA, for the implied flip side of their rat-interfaced interneted brains is the creation of a group mentality, a population which, if so interfaced, might be easier to control.... or, one whose mental powers might easy outstrip the ability of elites and technocrats to control. Maybe that's why they're studying all this...
See you on the flip side.