tech

Brain-computer interfaces could allow soldiers to control weapons with their thoughts

14 Comments
By Nancy S Jecker and Andrew Ko

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For example, Neuralink, a company co-founded by Elon Musk, is developing a brain implant for healthy people to potentially communicate wirelessly with anyone with a similar implant and computer setup.

In 2018, the U.S. military’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency launched a program to develop “a safe, portable neural interface system capable of reading from and writing to multiple points in the brain at once.”

While Musk drew inspiration from Iain Bank's Culture series about a "neural lace", it is highly probable DARPA could be ahead of his private venture in the development of this tech.

The military apps lead to many dystopian avenues different from the utopian ones of Banks who imagined this tech enhancing human abilities in a future dominated by AI.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Utilitarianism is the nerd ethics. It's the ethical system you utilise once the technology or institution is a fait accompli, or assumed to be. It can be programmed. Bigger contexts, like whether the institution - militaries - or tech themselves are ethical, can be ignored. The assumption here is that we, as a species, are incapable of ever overcoming war and achieving real peace. And we become what we are assumed to be. Tech will simply magnify that. Also anything that brings us closer to being machines ourselves, devoid of thought or feeling - which is a clear trend in capitalism too - is also taking us further away from the removal of violence and exploitation, and peace.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Pfft.Clint Eastwood did this in 'Firefox' ages ago.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I think this tech is unnecessary. Repeated use will in time give you the same kind of feeling where the article you are using becomes an extension of your mind. Example, I have motorcycle I have owned and ridden for 38 years and 500,000 km. By now it is an extension of me. I don't even consciously operate it. I think it and the bike responds. It talks to me through my hands, feet and seat and I communicate with it. It is part of me when I ride. Experienced pilots have the same relationship with aircraft they have a lot of hours in. I was getting pretty close with the old CH-46. The aircraft becomes and extension of their mind. Wrenching on that old bike, performing all the routine maintenance, I can almost do it blindfolded. I have a touch memory of every action required from servicing it so many times over the decades.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What could possibly go wrong?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I guess instead of bringing this latest ‘innovation’ into reality the whole planet in the current situation should limit itself in such cases to only using voodoo dolls , damningly prayers, death notebooks and such, where most probably doesn’t happen too much evil.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What could possibly go wrong?

As we all know, plenty. The human brain is not to be relied on, as when "brainy" McNamara recruited over 300,000 low-IQ grunts for his Vietnam War, or going further back to the 1920s when an official report categorized 11% of American troops as "morons". Technology would work well with an Einstein, but waging war is a primitive, regressive activity that Einsteins avoid like the plague.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Getting too cybhornetic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Pie in the sky,when just let the weapon pick it target

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Absolute madness !!! God help us !!!....because it seems that we cant help ourselves.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A technology ripe for abuse. Removing natural survival instinct to allow soldiers to put themselves at greater risk to complete missions. A possible "backdoor" into a soldier brain to allow some form of control, suggestion or suppression of normal behavior.

It may be intended for simply enabling soldiers to remotely control weapons, but for all the good intentions on weapons ever made there is always those with less morals that want to push boundaries between right and wrong, acceptable and unacceptable. It is a slipper slope putting tech inside people, let alone in their brain.

Caution is required.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It is a slipper slope

It is a slippery slope.

Really need edit button. Maybe on a timer so posts can be edited within five minutes of posting?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This technology would be perfect for communist regimes to control their subjects. Wait, this is being developed US?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

 Technology would work well with an Einstein, but waging war is a primitive, regressive activity that Einsteins avoid like the plague.

Says someone who has never been in a modern military. One of the great strengths of western volunteer militaries are the mid grade career enlisted troops who operate and maintain the complex hardware and software in modern weapons. These troops are very intelligent people. You have to be bright to work on combat jets, modern tanks with their abundant electronics for sensing and targeting other tanks, artillery, combat ships with hideously complex combat management systems like Aegis or gas turbine propulsion. The days of some poor sailor shoveling coal into a boiler are long gone. The "stokers" now have to understand modern jet engines and their digital engine controls. Operating something like an M-1A2 Abrams competently in combat is mind intensive work. And then you have submarines where everyone on the crew is expected to know how to perform every watch and every job on the sub regardless of what their rating is. Military pilots require two years or more of training before they are ready for an operational squadron and must have a college degree to qualify for flight school. All the officers must have a college degree.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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