Why Mind-Reading Is a Science, Not a Magic Trick

Posted by on October 6, 2017 in Sci-Tech, Science with 1 Comment
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

By Olivia Goldhill | The Telegraph

Electrical activity within the brain means that our thoughts can be read and understood .

Electrical activity within the brain means that our thoughts can be read and understood .

You may believe your thoughts are intangible and inscrutable, but all mental activity is communicated via electrical impulses. As our understanding of the brain increases, we’re increasingly able to decode our mental electrical signals, and translate our thoughts into automatic action.

A scalextric powered by the mind is the latest product to make use of our brainwaves. Stephen Sigurnjak, senior lecturer in electronics at the University of Central Lancashire, has built a scalextric where the cars are powered by the players’ level of concentration.

“You brain works off electrical activity, a bit like a computer,” he says. “As you concentrate on something, it fires neurons in the brain.”

Mind-control sclalextric headsets clip to the forehead to measure the level of mental activity. The thoughts are then organised into different frequency bands (the subconscious, for example, operates at a different level from conscious thoughts), the electric signal is processed by a computer and sent to a micro controller, which sends a corresponding level of voltage to power the car.

But when I put on the headset, the car stays still. Dr Sigurnjak says that it helps to visualise the alphabet or arithmetic problems but this makes no difference – apparently my brain signals remain tiny. The car starts to move when I listen to Dr Sigurnjak’s explanation but, once it’s started, it’s difficult to slow the car down. I try to stop thinking entirely – focusing on meditative breathing – and the car whizzes even faster, suggesting it takes an awful lot of brain power to try and shut down your thoughts.

Though the scalextric is fun, there are plans to use mind-control power in far more sophisticated ways. “If you’ve had an accident or are paralyzed then your brain could still work even if your body couldn’t. There’s quite a lot of research that goes into that area, and trying to control things just by thinking about them,” says Dr Sigurnjak. “The goal would be that you could think about turning left in a wheelchair and automatically turn left. And in the future you might be able to translate your thoughts. So you could think about what you want to write and a computer would type it out.”

READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE…

Tags: , , , ,

Subscribe

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS FeedConnect on YouTube

1 Reader Comment

Trackback URL Comments RSS Feed

  1. Nicolasprotopapas@yahoo.co.uk' Nicolas says:

    I made a playing card move slightly once by mind control & i knew what number card it was out of 52 playing cards!!! how is this possible???

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FAIR USE NOTICE. Many of the stories on this site contain copyrighted material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making this material available in an effort to advance the understanding of environmental issues, human rights, economic and political democracy, and issues of social justice. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of the copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law which contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered fair, such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. If you wish to use such copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use'...you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. And, if you are a copyright owner who wishes to have your content removed, let us know via the "Contact Us" link at the top of the site, and we will promptly remove it.

The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Conscious Life News assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms.

Paid advertising on Conscious Life News may not represent the views and opinions of this website and its contributors. No endorsement of products and services advertised is either expressed or implied.
Top

Send this to friend