Monday, July 04, 2011

New Software Can Predict What You Are Going to Do Before You Do It!

Researchers at the Center for Brain and Mind at The University of Western Ontario, using brain imaging software, can now determine what a person was planning, before that action is actually executed.

Possible uses for this software might be controlling prosthetic or helping paralyzed patients regain movement.

Of course if you can predict what a person is going to do could lead to a world very much like the one Philip K. Dick envisioned in his novel The Minority Report.


Homer said...

Damn - you totally beat me to the punch with the Minority Report reference....hahaha!!! Hope you had a great 4th!!!!

JoshM said...

Isn't it interesting how any new technological advance can so immediately bring to mind its beneficial uses (prosthetics) and its potentially harmful uses (Minority Report).

But in the more speculative realm of Minority Report I find myself wondering ... would the technology tell you only what a person is about to do, or would it actually give some sense of motive as well? Obviously in the fascist dystopia of Dick's novel, motive doesn't count for much. But in our current justice system it still does. Could one ever truly judge a person's motive for something they hadn't actually done yet?

Beam Me Up said...

Homer, yeah it all but jumped off the page. I don't know if it was how they phrased the benefits or what but it was like holy crap, they are talking about predicting a person's actions! Minority Report!

It was so foggy here that most of the town's canceled fireworks until tonight. Boy the air was so thick that I just knew that the fumes would lay in and you wouldn't have seen anything.

Beam Me Up said...

I honestly think that most people polarize their opinions of new tech. Any tech comes with it's positives and negatives but so very often people are only willing to see just one side.

You do bring a valid point about motivation. Honestly I think motivation is so very subjective that it will never really be part of any future tech that tries to predict an action. Minority Report aside one of the most fascinating utilization of predictive behavior didn't even take into account the actions of the individual. Though in truth, Asimov's Hari Seldon was interested only in how large groups would react. Asimov's vision was so much more far reaching while the society of Minority Report seemed to have no presence past the present. That's probably why Dick's vision was so chilling.