Note: This guest post is co-authored by Marianne Brandon and James Simon, with an epilogue by Glenn Geher. His wife had gone to bed early, so he locked the basement door to ensure privacy. He had planned this moment all day. Unlike his wife, who seemingly had lost interest in sex years ago, his lover was waiting downstairs, eager to please. Never critical or demanding, with such soft eyes and skin, sex had become such a pleasure. He had even come to love the way his lover pronounced his name. In spite of being a robot, she somehow managed to say it with such tenderness. . . Source: Panajiotis Pixabay We have become a massive, unintended sexual experiment. Our understanding of sex and gender is evolving at astonishing rates. Paradoxically, as powerful, exhilarating, and necessary as this process is for our collective future, we are simultaneously at a perilous moment for the future of intimacy and intimate relationships. Forcing sex into a politically … [Read more...] about Have We Reached the End of Sex?
Source: Pixel2013/Pixabay In a world’s first, a team of researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Weill Institute for Neurosciences released a study showing a brain-computer interface (BCI) with “plug and play” capabilities using machine learning . The solution enables a paralyzed patient's brain to control a computer using the device without extensive daily retraining. Karunesh Ganguly, an assistant professor at UCSF and associate professor of neurology at UCSF Medical Center, is the senior author of the paper, published on September 7 in Nature Biotechnology . “Plug and play” refers to the ability of a device to work as intended upon initial start, without any user intervention, such as reconfiguration or adjustments. For example, many computer peripherals, such as the mouse, keyboard, monitor, USB flash drive, and web camera typically work upon plug-in connection without any additional configurations. The ease-of-use of “plug and play” … [Read more...] about World’s First “Plug and Play” Brain-Computer Interface
Source: Pogonici/Shutterstock Elon Musk is a big idea kind of guy. The billionaire businessman is behind the electric car manufacturer Tesla as well as the space exploration company, SpaceX. Musk’s newest big idea is Neuralink, a company that will build brain-computer interfaces (or try). The announcement has been met with the full gamut of human emotion, including a lot of confusion and a lot of hope on the part of neural engineering graduate students who think they might just get a job after all. It has also been met with a healthy dose of skepticism, because Musk’s newest venture is going to be a lot more difficult than colonizing Mars. Neuralink’s end-goal is to merge human brains with artificial intelligence . Apparently, Musk is afraid of super-intelligent computers, and this is his strategy for mitigating the risk they pose to humanity. At least, that’s what he told Tim Urban who covered the topic in a long but entertaining post on his blog Wait but Why. Leaving to … [Read more...] about Brain-Computer Interfaces and the Future of Humanity