‘A Scientific Look At The Scariest Thing A Person Ever Has To Face’

Becky Ferreira for Vice on combining AI and fMRI scans to recreate stories people were watching, listening to, or imagining:

The decoder was able to interpret the gist of stories that human subjects watched or listened to—or even simply imagined—using fMRI brain patterns, an achievement that essentially allows it to read peoples’ minds with unprecedented efficacy. While this technology is still in its early stages, scientists hope it might one day help people with neurological conditions that affect speech to clearly communicate with the outside world.

Allison Parshall for Scientific American on combining AI and fMRI scans to recreate stories people were watching, listening to, or imagining:

Here’s an example of what one study participant heard, as transcribed in the paper: “i got up from the air mattress and pressed my face against the glass of the bedroom window expecting to see eyes staring back at me but instead finding only darkness.” Inspecting the person’s brain scans, the model went on to decode, “i just continued to walk up to the window and open the glass i stood on my toes and peered out i didn’t see anything and looked up again i saw nothing.”

Becky Ferreira for Vice on the detection of possibly-conscious brain activity during death:

Now, Borjigin and her colleagues have discovered similar gamma activity in the brains of patients who died in the hospital while they were monitored by electroencephalogram (EEG) sensors, which record neural activity. The researchers examined EEG readings from a small sample size of four unresponsive patients who were removed from life support with the permission of their families. During cardiac arrest, two of the people experienced complex gamma activity in a “hot zone” of the brain that is critical for conscious processing.

Stephanie Pappas for LiveScience on the detection of possibly-conscious brain activity during death:

According to new research, published Monday (May 1) in the journal PNAS (opens in new tab), this surge can sometimes occur after a person’s breathing stops but before the brain stops functioning. The activity pattern is somewhat similar to what is seen when people are awake or in dreamlike states, leading to speculation that perhaps these electrical surges reflect the otherworldly experiences reported by people who’ve had close brushes with death: A sense of looking at the body from the outside; a tunnel and white light; or a sense of reliving important memories.

Pappas doesn’t link these, but does mention similar research using “artificial intelligence to identify objects that people saw in their dreams based on their brain activity”.

How many years out are we, then, from a study that combines these studies and brings Brainstorm to life?

Referring posts