What are you thinking? Normally, our thoughts are private. But could it be possible that technology has advanced sufficiently to read our minds? In this article, we will explore the kinds of mind-reading technologies that already exist.
Many attempts have been made to read a person’s mind using technology and this started earlier than you realize. For example, ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Japan has conducted studies on mind-reading since 2008. The team of researchers used electroencephalography (EEG) to analyze an individual’s pattern of brain waves associated with dreams and created a database of patterns associated with visual objects. This enabled them to predict the content of dreams with an accuracy of 75–80%. ATR then developed a brain scanning technology that, together with brain wave analysis, could predict and decode the visual imagery in a person’s brain.
The Institute for Research in Psychiatry and Neurosciences in India is using fNIRS (functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy), technology that utilizes light in the near-infrared range to determine the brain activity of schizophrenia patients. The aim is to diagnose the underlying causes of symptoms and determine appropriate treatment.
Many futurists have discussed the threat to privacy from mind-reading technologies. If we can accurately interpret what ‘s going on people’s minds we can use this to win legal battles or to understand complex psychological processes. Mind-reading technology is potentially an invasion of privacy but we need to keep informed as there will be advancements in this field in the future.