I See What You’re Thinking

Brain Scan

Researchers at ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Japan have developed technology that can reconstruct the images inside a person’s mind and display them on a computer.

The scientists showed test subjects various images and used an MRI to map the changes in their cerebral blood flow. The images and resulting blood flow patterns were plugged into brain analysis software which associated the various changes in brain activity with the different image designs.

When the test subjects were shown a new set of images, the system could reconstruct and display what the test subjects were viewing based solely on their brain activity. (They say, almost apologetically, that right now they can only read images in black-and-white. They hope to be able to discern colors too.)

They foresee some interesting uses for the technology:

The researchers suggest a future version of this technology could be applied in the fields of art and design — particularly if it becomes possible to quickly and accurately access images existing inside an artist’s head. The technology might also lead to new treatments for conditions such as psychiatric disorders involving hallucinations, by providing doctors a direct window into the mind of the patient.


Link (via BoingBoing)