new technologies to enrich your mind Expanding  consciousness  with  Brain-machine interfaces
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste smell
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste pain smell
Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste pain smell let...
similarly to neurons, brain implant represents itself in consciousness Expanding experience
Synthetic qualia?  but is it possible for artificial device to create consciousness? artificial neural network models have...
Putting them together how to integrate synthetic qualia with those produced by brain? learn from nature! color shape motio...
The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>diffe...
The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>diffe...
The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>diffe...
The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>diffe...
The hardware how to make the implant broadcast? today’s brain-machine interfaces  electrode grid X  only those neurons clo...
The hardware a new hopes “ sprouting” brain-machine interfaces  Harnessing the blood supply network (R. Llinas) Growing up...
neurons are grown on a chip their axons grow through the brain intermediate layer between brain and electronics communicat...
Applications artificial bodies tactile and proprioceptive feedback for neuroprostheses
Applications approach to “cracking neural code” <ul><li>conscious neural implants provide a fresh approach to the problem ...
Going further exploring the minds of Others would it be possible to join conscious experience of another being with yours?...
Going further the Consciousness Singularity all consciousness on the planet, living and artificial, merged to a single one...
The end? nop, just the beginning! Thank you!
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Brain-Computer Interfacing - Alexandra Elbakyan - H+ Summit @ Harvard

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Brain chips to increase intellectual capabilities, control machines using thought alone, or transfer information directly into the brain are quite popular in sci-fi and have been recently adopted as concrete research goals by many science and engineering teams around the world. Currently developed prototypes adopt a "black box" model - they do not allow the user to experience what is going on inside the implant. Our brain, on the contrary, is open to us - it doesn't only process sensory input and calculate appropriate behaviors based on it, but also enables us to experience what is happening. In other words, brain activity is accompanied by consciousness.
Potentially, brain chips can also be designed to have consciousness inside them. Inserted into a human brain, such a conscious implant would expand the user's conscious experience with its own contents. For this, however, a new kind of brain-machine interface should be developed that would merge consciousness in two separate systems - the chip and the brain - into single, unified one.

Many technologies could be applied in this direction, for example the genetic engineering of special neurons designed to interface between ordinary neurons and electronic devices. Progress in conscious interfaces could eventually allow us to unify consciousness of different human beings, leading to the emergence of special kind of global brain, in which every individual will experience itself being a GB, and won't become just one of the cogs in this huge super-intelligent system.
Alexandra Elbakyan is a neurotechnology researcher and advocate, and a software developer.

Alexandra holds a BS in CS from Kazakh National Technical University in Almaty, Kazakhstan, specializing in information security. During the last year of her study, she worked on a security system that would recognize individuals by their brainwaves. After obtaining her BS she worked for a while with the Human Media Interaction Group at the University of Twente on the mind-controlled game Bacteria Hunt. Later she joined the Human Higher Nervous Activity Lab dedicated to the study of consciousness. Currently she is working in The Brain Machine Interfacing Initiative at Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg on the development of ECoG-based hand prostheses.

She is avidly pursuing the project of creating a brain implant that would expand the consciousness of its bearer. Read more about this in Consciousness in mixed systems: merging artificial and biological minds via Brain-Machine Interface. This is a very multi-disciplinary effort... so if you're interested in neurobiology of consciousness, neurotechnology, neuroengineering, genetic engineering, brain-machine interfaces, machine consciousness and want to contribute — contact Alexandra!

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Transcript of "Brain-Computer Interfacing - Alexandra Elbakyan - H+ Summit @ Harvard"

  1. 1. new technologies to enrich your mind Expanding consciousness with Brain-machine interfaces
  2. 2. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes
  3. 3. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color
  4. 4. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound
  5. 5. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste
  6. 6. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste smell
  7. 7. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste pain smell
  8. 8. Consciousness is… experiencing brain processes different processes cause different qualia color sound taste pain smell let’s enrich this experience with new technologies!
  9. 9. similarly to neurons, brain implant represents itself in consciousness Expanding experience
  10. 10. Synthetic qualia? but is it possible for artificial device to create consciousness? artificial neural network models have been already developed which demonstrate rudimentary consciousness or some aspects of consciousness Edelman brain-based devices neural networks simulations by Dehaene, Gamez
  11. 11. Putting them together how to integrate synthetic qualia with those produced by brain? learn from nature! color shape motion sounds so how does brain bring them all together?
  12. 12. The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>differentiation consist of many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration each module profoundly affects activity of others </li></ul><ul><li>consciousness can be measured mathematically </li></ul><ul><li>Global Neuronal Workspace Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Dehaene </li></ul><ul><li>many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration/broadcasting via subset of special workspace neurons </li></ul>what makes the system conscious?
  13. 13. The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>differentiation consist of many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration each module profoundly affects activity of others </li></ul><ul><li>consciousness can be measured mathematically </li></ul><ul><li>Global Neuronal Workspace Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Dehaene </li></ul><ul><li>many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration/broadcasting via subset of special workspace neurons </li></ul>what makes the system conscious? (C) Consciousness as Integrated Information: a provisional manifesto Tononi, 2008
  14. 14. The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>differentiation consist of many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration each module profoundly affects activity of others </li></ul><ul><li>consciousness can be measured mathematically </li></ul><ul><li>Global Neuronal Workspace Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Dehaene </li></ul><ul><li>many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration/broadcasting via subset of special workspace neurons </li></ul>what makes the system conscious?
  15. 15. The miracle of broadcast <ul><li>Information Integration Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Tononi & Edelman </li></ul><ul><li>differentiation consist of many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration each module profoundly affects activity of others </li></ul><ul><li>consciousness can be measured mathematically </li></ul><ul><li>Global Neuronal Workspace Theory </li></ul><ul><li>Dehaene </li></ul><ul><li>many specialized modules </li></ul><ul><li>integration/broadcasting via subset of special workspace neurons </li></ul>what makes the system conscious? (C) Neural mechanisms for access to consciousness Dehaene & Changeux, 2003
  16. 16. The hardware how to make the implant broadcast? today’s brain-machine interfaces electrode grid X only those neurons close to the surface <ul><li>DBS electrode </li></ul><ul><li>X many connections are not possible: </li></ul><ul><li>can damage everything </li></ul><ul><li>procedure too cumbersome </li></ul>
  17. 17. The hardware a new hopes “ sprouting” brain-machine interfaces Harnessing the blood supply network (R. Llinas) Growing up your own network of neuroagents
  18. 18. neurons are grown on a chip their axons grow through the brain intermediate layer between brain and electronics communication channel is natural for the brain The hardware interfacing in a brain-friendly way
  19. 19. Applications artificial bodies tactile and proprioceptive feedback for neuroprostheses
  20. 20. Applications approach to “cracking neural code” <ul><li>conscious neural implants provide a fresh approach to the problem of transferring information into the brain </li></ul><ul><li>transfer happens when brain-implant system becomes conscious </li></ul><ul><li>a mathematical tools for analyzing conscious systems are being developed </li></ul><ul><li>these tools finally allow to calculate optimal design for the implant enabling consciousness = information transfer </li></ul>
  21. 21. Going further exploring the minds of Others would it be possible to join conscious experience of another being with yours? the major difficulty is provided by functional aspects of consciousness
  22. 22. Going further the Consciousness Singularity all consciousness on the planet, living and artificial, merged to a single one the “functional problem” disappears at the global level Ω
  23. 23. The end? nop, just the beginning! Thank you!
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