Brain computer interface research is advancing rapidly thanks to the work of people like Bin He at the University Of Minnesota’s Biomedical Functional Imaging and Neuroengineering Laboratory. They have created a BCI which allows its user to control an aerial drone without the need for implants. According to Bin He; “My entire career is to push for noninvasive 3-D brain-computer interfaces, or BCI, researchers elsewhere have used a chip implanted into the brain’s motor cortex to drive movement of a cursor across a screen or a robotic arm. But here we have proof that a noninvasive BCI from a scalp EEG can do as well as an invasive chip.” This research could lead to greater public adoption and acceptance of BCI applications and products. Although there is still much work that needs to be done using this method but thus far the research looks very promising.
Rupert Sheldrake’s “The Science Delusion” is one of those TED talks that will not be truly appreciated for another 50 years or so. Here Sheldrake argues that modern science has become dogmatic akin to a kind of belief system and makes assumptions about the nature of reality that is not supported by scientific evidence. This talk is quite controversial and has spawned many debates online about the merits of Sheldrake’s arguments. It should be noted that many of the TED talks we today consider to be credible and acceptable would have been roundly rejected by mainstream scientists 50 years ago. The fact is, we know more now than we did then so perhaps realizing this we can approach Sheldrake’s work with an open mind. Sheldrake in his words seeks to “set science free” and dispel the dogmas that hold us back from opening up new frontiers.
In the western world we pride ourselves on the fact that we have achieved an unprecedented level of personal and civil freedoms. Freedom of speech, freedom of expression, freedom of the press, but how free are we really if we are not free to explore our own consciousness? What about freedom of mind? Consciousness expanding substances like DMT, psilocybin and lysergic acid diethylamide remain illegal despite their valuable and promising therapeutic use. In this banned TED talk “The War on Consciousness” Graham Hancock explores the links between the evolution of human consciousness and psychoactive substances.
Those that have followed the development of fusion power over the last fifty years have always said that; “fusion is the future and it always will be”, but what if that were no longer true? What if we could make clean, plentiful fusion power available in a 100 megawatt prototype reactor by 2017? At a recent Solve for X lecture, Charles Chase of Lockheed’s Skunkworks suggests this could be possible. If true according to his time line a 100 megawatt production system could be ready as soon as 2022.