"All the World's a Stage We Pass Through" R. Ayana

Saturday, 2 January 2016

DARPA’s Brave New World

DARPA’s Brave New World

cyborg future man eye



What the world will be like in 30 years, according to the US government's top scientists

The world is going to be a very different place in 2045.


Predicting the future is fraught with challenges, but when it comes to technological advances and forward thinking, experts working at the Pentagon's research agency may be the best people to ask.

Launched in 1958, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is behind some of the biggest innovations in the military — many of which have crossed over to the civilian technology market. These include things like advanced robotics, global positioning systems, and the Internet.

So what's going to happen in 2045?

It's pretty likely that robots and artificial technology are going to transform a bunch of industries, drone aircraft will continue their leap from the military to the civilian market, and self-driving cars will make your commute a lot more bearable.

But DARPA scientists have even bigger ideas. In a video series from October called "Forward to the Future," three researchers predict what they imagine will be a reality 30 years from now.

Dr. Justin Sanchez, a neuroscientist and program manager in DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office, believes we'll be at a point where we can control things simply by using our mind.

"Imagine a world where you could just use your thoughts to control your environment," Sanchez said. "Think about controlling different aspects of your home just using your brain signals, or maybe communicating with your friends and your family just using neural activity from your brain."

According to Sanchez, DARPA is currently working on neurotechnologies that can enable this to happen. There are already some examples of these kinds of futuristic breakthroughs in action, like brain implants controlling prosthetic arms.

Stefanie Tompkins, a geologist and director of DARPA's Defense Sciences Office, thinks we'll be able to build things that are incredibly strong but also very lightweight. Think of a skyscraper using materials that are strong as steel, but light as carbon fiber. That's a simple explanation for what Tompkins envisions, which gets a little bit more complicated down at the molecular level.

She explains:

"I think in 2045 we're going to find that we have a very different relationship with the machines around us," says Pam Melroy, aerospace engineer, former astronaut, and deputy director of DARPA's Tactical Technologies Office. "I think that we will begin to see a time when we're able to simply just talk or even press a button" to interact with a machine to get things done more intelligently, instead of using keyboards or rudimentary voice recognition systems.

She continues: "For example, right now to prepare for landing in an aircraft there's multiple steps that have to be taken to prepare yourself, from navigation, get out of the cruise mode, begin to set up the throttles ... put the gear down. All of these steps have to happen in the right sequence." 

Instead, Melroy envisions an aircraft landing in the future being as simple as what an airline pilot currently tells the flight attendants: "Prepare for landing." In 2045, a pilot may just say those three words and the computer knows the series of complex steps it needs to do in order to make that happen.

Or perhaps, with artificial intelligence, a pilot won't even be necessary.

"Our world will be full of those kinds of examples where we can communicate directly our intent and have very complex outcomes by working together."

DARPA wants to build a personal assistant that can read your mind




It’s the age of the smart device. From Apple’s Siri to the Amazon Echo, helpful personal assistants are being built into the world around us.

While we are still waiting for Siri to get a little better, the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) wants to go a step further — they want to build personal assistant machines that can anticipate your needs by reading your mind and body signals.

In a talk at June’s DARPA Biology is Technology conference in New York City, DARPA program manager Justin Sanchez explained that the data from our smart watches and trackers actually ends up being pretty meaningless, since these devices can’t put data in any sort of context or output a recommended action in response.

“Many of you are just getting things back like ‘this is what your heart rate is right now’ or ‘you took 6,000 steps today,'” he said during a talk. “Who cares about that stuff? What you really want to do is use that information to help you interact with machines in a much deeper way … today we don’t typically aggregate those signals together and do something with it.”

With the proliferation of these sensors in smart watches and trackers, Sanchez says it’s the right time to develop a smart device that can read these mind and body signals, connect to an external device that makes sense of the information, and then use that information to anticipate what you need and make recommendations.

“We have the pieces,” Sanchez told Business Insider. “These sensors are starting to be everywhere. Not only are they in the environment, they’re also on our bodies … we’ve got the computing power to take the information out of those sensors and we’ve got the mobile platforms so we have that interface at every step of our everyday lives.”

For Sanchez, the possibilities of this technology would be endless.

He points to the Nest Learning Thermostat, which can make changes to the temperature throughout the day based on your past settings, as an example. The Nest Thermostat puts machine learning to practical use, ensuring that after a few days, you may never have to set the thermostat again. Machine learning is a subfield of AI science focused on taking past patterns and making predictions based on those patterns.

Sanchez imagines a “physiological computer” that can read body and mind signals like heart rate and temperature and be able to tell, if you’re hot, cold, sleepy, frightened, or bored.

“You could interact with your environment, your architecture,” Sanchez said. “Let’s say you’re having a low point in your day in terms of productivity so what if you had an interface that could say ‘how about doing this? maybe this could spark your productivity?'”

Sanchez’s talk was called “Brain-Machine Symbiosis,” and he suggested that this seamless communication could one day happen directly between the brain and our devices through the use of implantable sensors.

But implants that can detect the brain’s electrical signals still have a long way to go.

For one thing, scientists still have yet to design devices that can stay in the brain for a long time without causing damage or losing functionality — the body simply doesn’t like them. Surgery to place implants is invasive. Surgeons drill small holes through the skull and “insert long thin electrodes” deep inside the brain,” according to a 2012 article in The Scientist.

The implants are often made of stainless steel or other types of metal — useful for conducting electric signals, but problematic for biological purposes.

“If you look at implanted electronics in the brain over the past 10 to 20 years, all suffer from a common problem which is the implant’s electronic probes … create scarring in brain tissue,” said Charles Lieber, a chemist from Harvard University who is working on a tiny mesh brain implant.

http://static.businessinsider.com/image/55946a112acae78b0e8b54b6/image.jpgLieber Research Group, Harvard University

When the body’s immune system senses an implant, the brain’s defence mechanism creates scar tissue around it to protect the brain. When a probe becomes too engulfed in glial scarring, it loses functionality.

But that doesn’t stop Sanchez. However we get to this “brain-machine symbiosis,” he’s open to it.

“There are many different futures that can stem from what we and others are doing,” he said. “There are a lot of technologies that could potentially get us there, which one is the right one? We can’t say. We’ve just got to try.”

Watch Justin Sanchez talk about his ideas at the conference, uploaded to YouTube by DARPAtv:

Acoustic Holograms that Levitate Particles

A team of researchers from the Universities of Bristol and Sussex in collaboration with Ultrahaptics have built the world’s first sonic tractor beam that can lift and move objects using sound wave.

Holographic acoustic elements for manipulation of levitated objects by Asier Marzo, Sue Ann Seah, Bruce W. Drinkwater, Deepak Ranjan Sahoo, Benjamin Long and Sriram Subramanian is published in Nature Communications.

Acoustic holograms are projected from a flat surface and contrary to traditional holograms, they exert considerable forces on the objects contained within.

The acoustic holograms can be updated in real-time to translate, rotate and combine levitated particles enabling unprecedented contactless manipulators such as tractor beams.

If we talking about the latest holographic techniques then watch this video of an amazing hologram technology show hold in Dubai last year showing spectacular holographic projections of animals, flying dragons and other out of this world creatures.

- Scroll down through ‘Older Posts’ at the end of each section

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  1. first off, these machines will not be smart..... In a price system (money) things will be built to break down so the quality of the machines will be shit. Do you really want a machine to read your mind that is planned to break down? Do you really want cars that drive themselves that have planned and or engineered obsolescence programs built into them? People at DARPA are idiots. Now, if they were to seriously talk about a society that moves itself beyond the myth of money and politics, then they might be considered smart, but again they'll never be smart under the current and or future operating insanity. They simply don't have the intelligence.

  2. Why don't these scientists collectively work to isolate the causation of psychopathy? (could be that some of them fall into that category) For if trends continue, our species will not survive. Nuclear plants have a safety plan for 4-6 hours, should the larger electrical grid go down. Why aren't all these brilliant scientists working hard to discover a method for stopping the ongoing spread of radiation into the Pacific Ocean/atmosphere?
    Fukushima: another gift from brilliant scientists.
    One can have a very high IQ, be steeped in the hard sciences, and yet remain largely unconscious. Intelligence, especially artificial intelligence, has nothing to do with consciousness.

  3. What causes psychopathy, free your mind? Is it environmental, biochemical, etc.... ??? Well, I'll repeat myself. Under the rules of the price system, there will be a few winners and a vast majority of losers and who in their right minds would choose to be a loser? And that sets the stage for immediate conflict and hence psychopathy. Yes, we're all killing each other, ourselves and the world for the MYTH of monies value. Money is a private enterprise and is exclusive to the owners who grant themselves a license to print it out of nothingness. We collectively agree to use it, it is based on scarcity principals and the idea of scarcity breeds fear and hence psychopathy becomes the new norm. IQ only measures the relative rate in which one learns. Intelligence is highly subjective for there are probably as many different kinds of intelligences as there are stars in the sky. The kind of intelligence I'm referring to is related to solving our worlds most complex problems. I have concluded that no viable solutions are possible under any kind of political-monetary system (scarcity-driven & fairytales). The current operating insanity insures us that only problems will exist under manufactured scarcity techniques through the fine art of BS.

  4. We're certain you're both correct. Alternatives such as Meritocracies can only work if the two seminal issues you've raised are addressed and overcome.

    1. A reality meritocracy based on function and technical skill, right Illuminator? The key to solving any ongoing problem is getting over our notions related to any subjective interpretation of value.

      Who hands out the merit badges in your system and what value do they hold to what subject and or purpose? Which subject is deemed more worthy in the realm of problem solving? Which is more important than another to warrant who gets merit and who doesn't?

    2. Precisely - AND without a Bill of Rights any 'ocracy' is just another shell game con

  5. Their is some fascinating information here. However, the brain-mind is already capable of doing these things without a man-machine interface, such as in the realms of healing and the manifestation of objects and actually really anything. The "double slit" experiment gives us proof of the brain-minds power of directing things. My book, "A Map to Healing and Your Essential Divinity Through Theta Consciousness" and the almost released, "A Map to Healing and Your Essential Divinity Through Theta Consciousness Revisited" go deep into these subjects. Dr. Robert J. Newton


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