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Scientists Discover How To Upload Data To The Brain

Skills Will Become Uploadable

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Just imagine that instead of spending hundreds of hours learning to master something that instead it could simply be uploaded to your brain and ready to use immediately. This concept has long been the dream of many as it’s been seen in sci-fi movies for decades. Want to learn karate? Done. Want to fly a plane? No problem.

Researchers from HRL Laboratories in California, claim to have found a way to significantly increase learning that wouldn’t look out of place in a Hollywood movie. The scientists studied the electric signals in the brain of a trained pilot and then fed the data into novice subjects as they learned to pilot an aeroplane in a realistic flight simulator.

Published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, the study found that subjects who received brain stimulation via electrode-embedded head caps improved their piloting abilities and learnt the task 33% better than a placebo group.

Although the current ability of it is still at the research stage, if made possible in the future, the possibilities are endless. Any skill or information could be provided within minutes instead of years, simply by uploading the data straight to the brain.

Dr Matthew Phillips, part of the research team, explained “Our system is one of the first of its kind. It's a brain stimulation system. It sounds kind of sci-fi, but there's large scientific basis for the development of our system. The specific task we were looking at was piloting an aircraft, which requires a synergy of both cognitive and motor performance. When you learn something, your brain physically changes. Connections are made and strengthened in a process called neuro-plasticity.”

Certain functions of the brain, like speech and memory, are located in very specific regions of the brain, about the size of your little finger. Dr Matthews believes that brain stimulation could eventually be used for tasks like learning to drive, exam preparation and language learning.

He added, “What our system does is it actually targets those changes to specific regions of the brain as you learn. The method itself is actually quite old. In fact, the ancient Egyptians 4000 years ago used electric fish to stimulate and reduce pain.”

“Even Ben Franklin applied currents to his head, but the rigorous, scientific investigation of these methods started in the early 2000s and we're building on that research to target and personalise a stimulation in the most effective way possible.”

If the research is anything to go by then the technology we’ve seen in movies such as The Matrix and Total Recall do not appear to be as far away as we may have thought!

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