One of the things I've commented on from time to time, is the uncanny way that patterns emerge in the articles that people share with me. Most readers here are aware that this website's community contributes an enormous amount of articles via emails, and when I review them, I try to allow the readership here to determine what I blog about. I make the selections of course, but every now and then, so many articles are sent that are more or less focussed on particular themes or topics, that I try to blog about those patterns when they occur.
This week, there was a heavy interest - maybe it's in the aether - on the subject of the technologies and techniques of mind manipulation and even of weaponizing such technologies. Consider these two articles, the first, shared by Ms. M.W., and the second by Mr.V.T.:
Now, concerning the first article, some weeks ago I blogged about Japanese neurological researchers who had successfully demonstrated a system that was able to read a person's thoughts remotely, i.e., via a super-sensitive receiver that tuned into a person's brain waves, and then translated these via computer algorithms. Note that the technology discussed in the first article is the use of implanted electrodes in the brain, but note also the vast expansion of possibilities this makes available:
The team implanted the electrodes into the brains of epilepsy patients at the Seattle Harborview Medical Center. These patients were chosen because usual treatments, like medication, weren’t effective. It was necessary for the researchers to use this procedure temporarily to see if they could find the focal points of the seizures.
With their specialized test of showing images of faces and houses to the patients, the researchers were able to determine in a much broader scale, the affected neurons instead of one neuron in traditional diagnostics. This allowed for an algorithm that analyzed the data to determine on its own what the patient was looking at, whether it was a picture of a house, a face, or a blank screen and to their surprise, the algorithm ascertained the right answer at 96% of the time. It did it at an average speed of 20 milliseconds.
Things get weirder with this area of research. In another experiment researchers were able to get disabled persons to move a finger where they couldn’t do before and they hooked up two brains with electrodes so that the two people could guess what the other was thinking.
This is straight out of science fiction for sure but it’s a reality now.
In theory the use of electrodes of a more complex level could achieve ways for disabled persons to regain lost abilities of mobility and communication.
It does not take much imagination to see endless other possibilities, such as "radio assisted telepathy," i.e., the direct communication of thoughts between soldiers on the battlefield, without the use of speech. Throw in encryption technologies (think of the current dispute between Apple and the US Federal government here, over the phone of the San Bernardino terrorists), and one has not only a vast potential for "interaction", but also for a new type of privacy in communications. Then throw in hacking, signals jamming and... well, you get the idea.
But the technology also implies something else, raised by the second article:
Sources in Moscow say Mr Putin has described the guns, which use electromagnetic radiation like that found in microwave ovens, as ‘entirely new instruments for achieving political and strategic goals’.
Mr Putin added: ‘Such high-tech weapons systems will be comparable in effect to nuclear weapons, but will be more acceptable in terms of political and military ideology.’
Plans to introduce the super- weapons were announced quietly last week by Russian defence minister Anatoly Serdyukov, fulfilling a little-noticed election campaign pledge by president-elect Putin.
Mr Serdyukov said: ‘The development of weaponry based on new physics principles – direct-energy weapons, geophysical weapons, wave-energy weapons, genetic weapons, psychotronic weapons, and so on – is part of the state arms procurement programme for 2011-2020.’
Specific proposals on developing the weapons are due to be drawn up before December by a new Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency.
Research into electromagnetic weapons has been secretly carried out in the US and Russia since the Fifties. But now it appears Mr Putin has stolen a march on the Americans. Precise details of the Russian gun have not been revealed. However, previous research has shown that low-frequency waves or beams can affect brain cells, alter psychological states and make it possible to transmit suggestions and commands directly into someone’s thought processes.