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How a 1960s Discovery In Neuroscience Spawned a Military Project

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the did-you-see-that dept.

The Military 112

Harperdog writes "This is pretty fascinating: The Chronicle of Higher Ed has an article about a DARPA project that allows researchers to scan satellite photos, video, etc., and have a computer pick up differences in brain activity to tell whether an image has been seen...images that might flash by before conscious recognition. From the article: 'In a small, anonymous office in the Trump Tower, 28 floors above Wall Street, a man sits in front of a computer screen sifting through satellite images of a foreign desert. The images depict a vast, sandy emptiness, marked every so often by dunes and hills. He is searching for man-made structures: houses, compounds, airfields, any sign of civilization that might be visible from the sky. The images flash at a rate of 20 per second, so fast that before he can truly perceive the details of each landscape, it is gone. He pushes no buttons, takes no notes. His performance is near perfect.'"

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See, the brain is a great computer (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40622711)

It just has a terribly documented API.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (4, Funny)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#40622921)

Well the API has too many wrappers and obsolete interfaces to take care of.
If we could just get that processor out of that power hungry finicky motherboard and package in glassware, and maybe hook up hundred of them...

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40624411)

you want to run a Beowulf cluster?

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (3, Funny)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624509)

Might be handy for deduplicating my porn collection :-)

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

hihihihi (940800) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625401)

no... no facebook for me. thanks for asking.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (0)

kh31d4r (2591021) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624951)

Well the API has too many wrappers and obsolete interfaces to take care of. If we could just get that processor out of that power hungry finicky motherboard and package in glassware, and maybe hook up hundred of them...

But does it run linux?

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1, Funny)

WilliamGeorge (816305) | more than 2 years ago | (#40622985)

God just didn't give us the API manual :)

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (0)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623203)

So ... it is true? Steve Jobs was God?

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623671)

Given that making a new brain means compiling it yourself, and that the compilation takes months, Daniel Robbins is more likely to be the culprit.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

pinkushun (1467193) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624829)

Sorry to disappoint... He wasn't female enough.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626835)

You sure? I mean, he did have some fashion sense and it seemed he was able to distinguish between more colors than a 16bit palette can display...

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623011)

What, the Bible's not good enough for ya?

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623209)

That's the user manual, not the API documentation. If you cannot tell the difference, hand in your geek card!

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (0)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623835)

Got your API right here [biblegateway.com] , bub :-) There's more scattered around elsewhere.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (5, Funny)

EvolutionInAction (2623513) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624117)

Doubly appropriate, since the user manual is always written after the fact, and inconsistent with the rest of the documentation.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (2)

davester666 (731373) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624643)

Yeah, it explains how you should use the product, with the implicit understanding that you NOT use it any other way.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626823)

And just like with any other product, the admins routinely abuse it for their own goals.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40627227)

And usually wrong.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

operagost (62405) | more than 2 years ago | (#40628125)

The rest of the nonexistent documentation?

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (3, Insightful)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623115)

What API? It's self-modifying software / hardware that many societies are so fed up with, they try running a virtual machine on top that does what they want it to do. That's what 12+ years of education is about, paring you down to the least common denominator, until you match a wine-drinker's normal model.

Lower / middle / high school -> punishment before the Almighty hierarchy depending on how well you conform to your peer's standards. College / real life -> working hard at a job to earn money so you can try to retrieve the relative peace of mind you once had when people didn't expect anything of you. When you're younger, you try to grow up, to get at those privileges denied to you by your seniors, when you're older, you try to stay the same age. And when you're really old, you look forward to death as some form of rest.

Someone, somewhere, thought that if you're borderline sentient, you wouldn't be able to be unhappy, or that you'd be so busy with trivial problems that you wouldn't get bored enough to die. Hence schools belt out kids, year after year, that appear to be successively less knowledgeable, in pursuit of some golden "Ignorance is bliss." Well, it's not. However, there are things we can do, somewhat independent of intelligence, that we can enjoy until we discover sentient life somewhere else in the universe / multiverse / whatever. My personal favorite, of course, is watching anime and reading manga, which as I am terrible at foreign languages, should keep me preoccupied with a pleasantly futile task until sometime after the last star cools. Pick a task you're not particularly good at, and stick with it; for some of us, this will be rising at an early hour, for others, this will be evolving / designing cats that yodel (going to need a Bass, a Soprano, a Falsetto...and since they're cats, getting them to do something as a group is the futile task).

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (4, Funny)

Ryanrule (1657199) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623655)

Kids on your lawn again?

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (3, Funny)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625571)

Kids under my lawn again. They've gotten crafty.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40626867)

Or you've gotten crafty, depending on whether they're tunneling or just buried.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (2)

quintus_horatius (1119995) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623905)

That's what 12+ years of education is about, paring you down to the least common denominator, until you match a wine-drinker's normal model.

too bad you didn't stick to your education until the magic happens and you realize that it's teaching you how to think. You aren't born with much idea of how to use your brain. Education is the distillation of thousands of years of experience reverse-engineering the brain.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (4, Insightful)

yndrd1984 (730475) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624683)

too bad you didn't stick to your education until the magic happens and you realize that it's teaching you how to think

I think you guys are conflating 'education' with 'schooling'. "I have never let my schooling interfere with my education." - Mark Twain

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (2)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625581)

Hush. They told him how to think, let's see what he does with his life.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

Raenex (947668) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625055)

That's what 12+ years of education is about, paring you down to the least common denominator, until you match a wine-drinker's normal model.

Umm, what? It's about teaching you something in the hopes you can be a useful part of society instead of a Walmart greeter.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (2)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625597)

And yet we have so many Walmart greeters. I take it that fact doesn't bother you.

Now tell me that they've became Walmart greeters because they didn't learn as they were supposed to in school. Tell me it's their fault. Do it.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

Raenex (947668) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625729)

Many of them, sure, they didn't take school seriously. I knew a lot like that when I went to school. And the fact remains, school is about education, not your silly "least common denominator" view. If you want "least common denominator", then taking your advice about striving to do shit poorly like read manga is the way to go.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

slartibartfastatp (613727) | more than 2 years ago | (#40628489)

ITS A TRAP!

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (2)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 2 years ago | (#40629067)

Tell me it's their fault. Do it.

If they don't like what they are doing, then yes it's their fucking fault for not doing what it takes to change their situation. And I say this as a high school drop out who gained a BSc as a 30yo while driving taxis and supporting a family with two school age kids. I've lived in what americans call a "trailer park" and done my 15yrs of shit jobs, some of them such a "lumberjack" I enjoyed immensly, others were border line torture. I'm now in my 50's and very glad to have been taught "how to think" (or more acurately "how to learn"), it's part of me and it has changed my life over the last 20 odd years in a way that cannot bought and will not be experienced "on the job". OTOH my 15yrs in the "real world" is also part of me, a part you won't get sitting in an office or a lecture hall.

Of course the money that comes with a degree is nice but how does one tell if they're genuinely happy or just brainwashed? I've worked with intellectually disabled people who are just pleased as punch to stand in one spot and feed timber into a molding machine for 12hrs a day. You could pay them in peanut butter sandwiches and they would still think it's a great job. They don't understand money they just want to do something useful, which is more than I can say for a lot of "normal" people. OTOH I know well educated proffesionals around my age who could easily afford to retire but don't because they enjoy what they are doing and want to remain useful for as long as they can.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (2)

Lord Lode (1290856) | more than 2 years ago | (#40628073)

That of males is documented slightly better than that of females.

Re:See, the brain is a great computer (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 2 years ago | (#40628347)

It just has a terribly documented API.

Only a nerds have a problem with the API, the rest of humanity calls it "intuative".

Welcome to the future (2)

tqft (619476) | more than 2 years ago | (#40622717)

and of course stuff like this & google goggles is only the beginning

Re:Welcome to the future (4, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#40622797)

Drink Coke.

Re:Welcome to the future (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40622827)

google goggles is going to be DOA if a real product ever comes out of it. They look stupid; glasses are obtrusive; and I really can't think of a bigger way to broadcast that you're a dork than walk around with those on your face. Oh, and if you're wearing those and having a conversation with me in person, I will definitely want to punch you in the face. It's like a more irritating version of putting your face in your phone while talking to someone.

Re:Welcome to the future (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40622943)

Yep, I think applications in the consumer market are not going to be wildly popular for just these reasons. But I can think of some very cool uses in the commmercial/industrial space like hands-free barcode scanning for warehouse receipting & stocktakes, or live video feeds or photos while performing repair work.

Re:Welcome to the future (4, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#40622987)

Google Glasses can be disguised, and roughly half the population wear some form of glasses anyway.
No, they will not be DOA, they will be wildly successful, especially if they can be made to look like regular sunglasses or prescription glasses.

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?
 

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40623085)

And it's just the first step before it gets fitted on contact lenses

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

gregfortune (313889) | more than 2 years ago | (#40630747)

Absolutely, be we have a ways to go before we can solve the power problems. Even in the prescription glasses form-factor, power is not a solved problem.

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40623125)

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?

Be fair; he said he would "want to punch you in the face." And there's scads of internet tough-guys proclaiming their desire to punch headset-wearers in the ear, face, and/or crotch, so yes. He probably does.

Re:Welcome to the future (2)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623267)

Nah, there's far more entertaining things you can do to them. :)

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40625137)

You realize the first thing someone will do is make a google glasses naked mod so everyone you look at will appear naked, right?

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40629101)

Take a step outside. Take a look around at the people that pass you. Now ponder: How many of them do you want to see naked? And how likely are you to see a fit girl or guy (depending on your preferences) before you get blind from having to see the rest?

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

Cederic (9623) | more than 2 years ago | (#40629717)

So only turn it on when going past the local university. Ah, students.

Of course, eventually it'll be hacked and distributed as malware that only switches on when you're walking past the local kindergarten. Good luck explaining that one..

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

Decker-Mage (782424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623559)

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?

Don't tempt me! Quite a bit of the time I can't tell if the speaker is talking to me or to someone via their cell.

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40624143)

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?

Not before now, but thanks for the great idea!

Re:Welcome to the future (2)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624503)

"Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?"

Do? No, not usually. Want to? Absolutely. Associate with them? Absolutely not.

IF Google glasses can be hidden, they MIGHT sell some. That's a pretty big IF though. At least in the near future.

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40625511)

"Google Glasses can be disguised, and roughly half the population wear some form of glasses anyway."

The other half carries wine glasses.

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

kav2k (1545689) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625909)

Hmmm, that actually gives me an idea..
I think that Google Glass should include a crucial feature..
..the ability to punch people in the face over standard TCP/IP
Well, maybe not punch, due to platform limitations, but a shock should be an acceptable substitute and first step.
We already have "push" messaging, so we're just a step away anyway.

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40626035)

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?

Why yes, yes I do.

Re:Welcome to the future (2)

Nyder (754090) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626725)

..

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?

Yes I do.

Then I say, "Can you hear me now?"

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40627871)

Do you run around punching people who wear Bluetooth headsets in the ear?

No, but we should. (I'd recommend punching them in the face, however.)

Re:Welcome to the future (1, Funny)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623253)

Wait, you cannot carry on a conversation without looking at someone? Why the hell should I look at someone just to talk with him, that's what my ears are for. I can use my eyes for something more useful than looking at your face.

Jeesh, some people are really full of themselves. Just 'cause I'm talking with you doesn't mean you need my full attention, there are very few people who can actually transfer information fast and complicated enough to need this elevated level of attention.

Re:Welcome to the future (4, Insightful)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623995)

Looking at someone while talking to them conveys much more information then just the speech alone. Does one person have a confused look on their face? Is the other party trying to stop you from speaking so they can ask something non-verbally? Does the other person look like they totally don't give a fuck?

I do hope you understand the importance of nonverbal communication [wikipedia.org] in conversation. Engagement [wikipedia.org] is a very important part of communication, and is much of the reason why people still travel long distances to have face to face meetings in business. It's not just some people, it's most people that feel important when you look at them when you talk, especially the people that have the greatest monetary influence on your life, bosses, girlfriends, customers...

A lot of geeks and nerds get the label, not because of their obsession with their trade, but the inability to communicate with other people properly.

Q: How can a woman tell the difference between a geek and a jock?
A: A jock stares at her breasts, a geek stares at her shoes.

Re:Welcome to the future (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40624847)

Nobody has anything to say that he doesn't already know or thinks he can't get from some firehose source on the net, like, _faster_ man. Why should he bother even really listening to them? And look at them?! Non-verbal?!! Pshaw.

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626805)

It's also much easier to convey sarcasm when the listener can listen to the tone of your voice...

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40624369)

So your parents didn't teach you any manners? Not our problem.

Re:Welcome to the future (1)

chrismcb (983081) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625319)

Why the hell should I look at someone just to talk with him, that's what my ears are for.

Because it is polite.
And for me it is easier for me to understand you. I am not deaf, and I don't read lips. But I am hard of hearing, and seeing your face actually helps me to hear what you are saying.
Plus I know you are talking to me and not to someone else.

Re:Welcome to the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40625551)

Yeah, know who else didn't look at anyone when they talked? Rainman. Yeah....Rainman. Of course, Rainman was autistic, yeah Rainman. Didn't get along with people, yeah. But didn't need to look at them, definitely, definitely didn't need to look at them.

What Roy G. Biv on that technicolor autistic rainbow are you, pardner?

New Airport Scanner (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40622789)

Sir, please sit down and stare at this screen for 60 seconds.

(13.18 seconds later)

BEEP! Warning: this person has seen pedophile material!

After weeks of research to prove he's innocent, the man brings his family photo album in which we can see naked baby pictures that look very similar in decor, photo angle, etc.

Re:New Airport Scanner (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40624981)

That BEEP would prove that the person has already been to the airport once (and was shown those pictures).

Re:New Airport Scanner (1)

Thiez (1281866) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626535)

What exactly is the point of preventing people who have seen 'pedophile material' from flying? It's not like anyone is going to abuse children in a crowded place where their name is registered, while being thousands of feet up in the air without any out-of-sight places.

Re:New Airport Scanner (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40628899)

I know, I know, nobody actually reads TFA... but it's "seen" as in "saw something there," not as in "has previously seen." As in, there is a system being tested that can determine from your brain's response if there is something "interesting" in that image... so you probably wouldn't want to hire geologists or ecologists as your "human computers."

Poorly worded summary fail.

dude (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40622919)

That man has the saddest job in the world.

Re:dude (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623307)

Sitting on your ass, staring at a screen, not doing anything...

Now, I did not RTFA, so I don't know whether he needs some kind of special training or whether he's a one in a million guy with some special "talent", but it sounds like a job that a lot of people would like to do. And considering a few coworkers of mine, I know a lot of people who would be very well suited to it...

Re:dude (1)

lessthan (977374) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623809)

Tell me about it. I would love this job. Stare at a screen all day? I do that anyway!

Re:dude (4, Informative)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625431)

The cheapest robot is the human being, and if you ever worked on a factory floor you would know that is usually true. A shift doing one simple action over and over again to the pace of a machine.

To give one simple example a flow wrap machine for a crisp/chip factory doing a multipack. The production process is already automated as much as possible. A bulk loader trailer (a lorry trailer with a conveyor in the bottom of it feeds potato's into a flume the PLC turns the conveyor on and off as required controlling the flow of potato's into the system. the flume takes the potato's to a 3 stage peeler which are abrasive rollers with progressively finer rolls. next the grader halver
which just passes through potato's of an appropriate size or cuts them down in size. the next stage is a number of spinning drums with razor blades which cut the chips/crisps followed by a bath to remove starch and into a fryer. On exiting the chips/crisps are run down a belt and made to jump onto a second one above this are camera's and a series of air jets the cameras are looking for burnt bits when they spot a burnt crisp the air jet blasts the burnt chip down between the 2 belts onto a cross belt and then feeds back to the first belt since the airjet will take some good chips of as well as the burn't ones so the waste is kept down. So far two people have jobs largely changing the blades on the chipper and monitoring the oven. producing about 7500kg of chips an hour.

the next stage is to flavour stations and packing which is fed by a series of vibrating conveyors (which are stainless steel troughs not belts). At a flavour station flavouring is added and a multi-head weigher collects the chips into bins and that calculates the weights needed to get your 25g bag eg two bins have 8g and 17g so these are opened together the packets are a sheet of plastic foil which is folded and seamed and crimped and cut. the top of one bag becomes the base of the next bag and when the chips are dropped the bag isn't made until part way through the fall.

The sealed packet then hits another conveyor which weighs the bags to check they are in specification and rejects the ones that are not (very few in practice) then either onto a rotating table where the human puts 48 in a box. or to the robot which unfolds the carton tapes it lines up 8 bags picks them up puts them in making 6 layers and seals it (if it only picks up 7 it rejects them which can be a big problem) and then the human stacks the cartons. That packing robot is an expensive piece of kit costing roughly 10 years worth of wages of a human packer, but can run 24/7 usually 24/5.

Back to multipacks a flow wrap machine has a sectioned belt so flavour A goes in 1 flavour B in 2 and flavour C in the third. the multipack is essentially a large packet with a simpler machine feeding it. it's old technology really (you can do a similar process to making the actual bags with a bigger multihead weigher) , but to feed that machine you have a bunch of operators who just put bags into the sections pick up drop pick up drop repeat for 8 hours 5 days a week pretty mind numbing soul destroying work but it's a job. You actually automate yourself to do it, more muscle memory than thought, pacing the machine. they do at least move stations every 15 minutes but you pretty much know how many laps you do before each break and per shift.

Thing is there are a lot of jobs like this just as soul destroying so the guy processing 5 images a second is his job any worse than this type of repetitive pick up and drop job?

The camera system on the crisp line essentially identifies black pixels and uses that to determine when product is burnt, a steam peeler (super heated steam blasts new potato's for about 30 seconds) uses a similar camera system to identify potato's with skin still attached. again its dark where it should be light. Systems maybe are better at recognising features these days but it always will be hard, maybe detecting a human detecting a feature is easier, does it have to be human? As a job it would suck but perhaps it is no worse than the production jobs we already have. Maybe its a job people who are physically unable to work could do.

I used to enjoy automating processes because it releases people from doing boring meaningless jobs. The trouble is what to do with the people who are now redundant? Without jobs they can't buy the products and commerce starts to break down.

Re:dude (1)

equex (747231) | more than 2 years ago | (#40627081)

Every human is going to end up having an android avatar that does the actual productive work, actual humans will just basically keep the avatars running so everything else is kept up.

What was seen cannot be unseen. (4, Interesting)

game kid (805301) | more than 2 years ago | (#40622991)

Things like plot and game-mechanic spoilers, shock sites, and things I'd generally rather not read or view instead burn into my brain even before I get a chance to realize what hit my eyes. Other things (however important) end up filed away in my brain's apparently vast realm of Please Jog My Memory, I Forget.

I'm pretty sure it's normal (if not crucial for natural responses like fight-or-flight [wikipedia.org] ), but it still amuses me (except when it disturbs me).

Wait, this isn't about goats? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40622997)

From the headline, I expected something about killing goats by staring at them (Project Jedi). We would have also accepted remote viewing (Stargate Project).

Just don't mention torture of civilians (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40623099)

"Other projects Darpa finances include one to test whether sending electricity through the brain can accelerate learning; another that seeks to use psychology and neuroscience to understand which types of communication best convince those living in occupied lands that they should yield to American forces, a sort of Propaganda 2.0; and a project aimed at developing drugs that would reduce or erase traumatic memories."

How about the radio waves that interface with the CNS and brain, or the A.I. that has been torturing civilians worldwide whilst you nutters build your driver interface???

Fuckwits.

The inevitable followup (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40623199)

Next up: what's the effect on a human brain of spending half an hour watching images flash past too quickly to absorb? Eight hours? How do you keep awake?

Big Brother via Terry Shaivo? (4, Interesting)

Yakasha (42321) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623311)

Hook up a bunch of vegges with functional visuals to city-wide cameras (or whatever venue you want to watch). Stick a wanted poster next to the screen and wait for the spike.

But (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40623375)

What happens when he blinks?

Re:But (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40624267)

Don't blink. Blink and you're dead.

Re:But (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40628211)

Ooh... a Dr. Who reference. +1 geek cred to AC.

Re:But (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40625145)

So they actually have two guys. Probably pretty rare they both blink at the same instant. Or, detect the blinks and re-display the image(s)...

Other uses for this? (2)

silvermorph (943906) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623665)

Galaxy Zoo could possibly benefit from this tech. Or oncologists who stare at MRI images looking for tumors.

Magnificent! (0, Flamebait)

InspectorGadget1964 (2439148) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623741)

A human beign has been lowered to the status of "piece of equipment". Only in the US

TRWTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40623867)

is that Trump Tower is nowhere near Wall Street.

Oops, wrong site :(

Re:TRWTF (1)

nospam007 (722110) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625537)

"is that Trump Tower is nowhere near Wall Street."

It's the tower with the funny roof.

Was Leon there? (1)

axlr8or (889713) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623915)

Not helping an inverted tortoise. I mean, inverted turtle?

Re:Was Leon there? (1)

rjames13 (1178191) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626105)

yes but Deckard shot first.

Thus... (1)

PingKin (2457988) | more than 2 years ago | (#40623921)

....begins the development of the Mentat.

See (ha) THIS is what should've been in the Matrix (1)

wisebabo (638845) | more than 2 years ago | (#40624707)

The one big (science) flaw in the movie "The Matrix" was why they needed to use humans.

They had some pseudo babble involving using the humans as batteries (involving cold fusion I think).

Instead, they should've had the machines using the unused portions (we're only using 10 percent right?)* of the humans brains for things like this, image recognition which machines suck at.

Anyway, anytime the Wachowski brothers need a science consultant I'm right here (Wisebabo :). (I actually helped with the writing of one of the episodes of "The Animatrix" but that's another story).

*I know that's an urban myth but it fits here.

Re:See (ha) THIS is what should've been in the Mat (3, Informative)

jkflying (2190798) | more than 2 years ago | (#40625525)

In the original script the Matrix was actually *run* on the human brains, but execs thought that would be too complicated for the masses, so they changed it to 'harness the electrical and heat energy'. Which makes no sense, as electric eels would have been a much better candidate than keeping around a possibly hostile, intelligent race.

Goatse (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40625411)

What has been seen can not bee unseen!

Used by Police in Japan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40625533)

This is already used.
In Japan, suspects are shown images of certain items found on "the" crimescene. (Umbrella, purse, knife, etc...)
The brainactivity tells who has seen these items before, and as some items could only have been seen by the victim or the perpetrator, conclusions are made about who is guilty.

The Real Question: the result? (1)

Tim12s (209786) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626043)

What was the result of the military research?

Re:The Real Question: the result? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40626987)

He noticed nothing. Since only 1 image out of every 200 had anything of note, he has 0 false-positives, and that gives him a 99.5% success rate.

I know what it will be used for (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#40626601)

"Citizen, you seem to have an unauthorised copy of our film in your brain! That will cost you a quadrillion dollars and 3 years in prison."

Also, how do they plan to filter out fake recognition events like déja vu?

Law Enforcement (1)

clam666 (1178429) | more than 2 years ago | (#40628265)

This will be interesting in a decade or two when they start using this as a court approved "lie detector".

Cops: "Your Honor, Mr. Smith tested positively of identifying the women we're accusing him of murdering. Although he requested a lawyer soon after, we found that the new NeuroIdent(tm) analyzer in the interrogation room remotely read a spike when we showed him a picture of the body, he also showed a spike when we flashed a picture of the murder weapon, a kitchen knife."

Judge: "This is the woman who worked at the Starbucks near where the suspect lives?"

Cops: "Yes, which is why we need a warrant on him Sir, obviously he killed her, otherwise, why would his brain have spiked when seeing her? Just like DNA, there's no possible way for it to happen because this is the same thing DARPA uses, and it's based on science Your Honor. We didn't find DNA at the crime scene, but we did notice the spike, so obviously he's lying about not knowing her and therefore, must have killed her."

Judge: "Sounds reasonable. I hope you catch the bastard. It's a good thing that the NeuroIdent(tm) is admissable as evidence in court, unlike those stupid old 'lie detectors' from years ago, that only reacted to involuntary stimuli manifesting a reaction in the subject. And since it's in the brain, there's no way he could fool it or it could be inaccruate."

Cops: "High five."

Sounds like flashing on the Intersect. (1)

aristotle-dude (626586) | more than 2 years ago | (#40628527)

They could couple these sensors with an image search algorithm of the NSA database and there you have it, the Intersect.

Obviously, the whole storing the database in your head is a bit far fetched but imagine a pair of glasses that contained a wireless radio that processed the input from the sensors detecting a recognition in your brain forwarding that to the database and returning a result back to display on the glasses to the wearer or to a bluetooth connected device.

I don't work with image matching but I do work systems that match based on text and phoneme similarity of names and places in data from disparate sources.

Things I wish the writer had asked. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40628837)

> During his visit, Sajda was struck by how the analysts could tell, from only a few pixels, what they were looking at.

Wonder if they'd get the same results using non-analysts. Or if analysts who use this device would eventually see their skills atrophy.

BBC documentary - Out Of Control (1)

Chris Shannon (897827) | more than 2 years ago | (#40630027)

BBC had a documentary called Out Of Control where they show this technology.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LM_iiPFkNas&t=52m1s [youtube.com]
It's a very interesting hour-long program. It makes me wonder if it is me that's posting this to slashdot or my subconscious overlord inside my brain.

A Promotion (1)

oldmac31310 (1845668) | more than 2 years ago | (#40630769)

That guy got promoted from the goat staring department.
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