Combining Human and Machine Brains - Practical systems in information & control
Warwick, K. (2007) Combining Human and Machine Brains - Practical systems in information & control. In: Filipe, J., Ferrier, J. L., Cetto, J. A. and Carvalho, M. (eds.) Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics II. Springer, Dordrecht, pp. 3-9. ISBN 9781402056253
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In this paper a look is taken at how the use of implant technology can be used to either increase the range of the abilities of a human and/or diminish the effects of a neural illness, such as Parkinson's Disease. The key element is the need for a clear interface linking the human brain directly with a computer. The area of interest here is the use of implant technology, particularly where a connection is made between technology and the human brain and/or nervous system. Pilot tests and experimentation are invariably carried out apriori to investigate the eventual possibilities before human subjects are themselves involved. Some of the more pertinent animal studies are discussed here. The paper goes on to describe human experimentation, in particular that carried out by the author himself, which led to him receiving a neural implant which linked his nervous system bi-directionally with the internet. With this in place neural signals were transmitted to various technological devices to directly control them. In particular, feedback to the brain was obtained from the fingertips of a robot hand and ultrasonic (extra) sensory input. A view is taken as to the prospects for the future, both in the near term as a therapeutic device and in the long term as a form of enhancement.