MIT scientist says brain implants are a bad idea

Elizabeth Childs (
Fri, 20 Aug 1999 11:24:53 -0700

The author is the director of MIT's Laboratory for Computer Science. I was really struck with how absolutely feeble the arguments were.

I post it solely as a cultural bellwether.

Another cultural bellwether:

Showtime has been running a one-hour documentary about historical visions of the future. Most of the people interviewed were actors and other entertainers, so I think it's safe to assume that their opinions are probably fairly typical of people at large. The two things that really struck me:

  1. They were all rather disappointed and even annoyed that there wasn't more technological progress by now. They wanted grand, visible signs of progress, and were clearly in favor of it. I didn't watch the whole thing, but in the part I did watch, no one commented on all the amazing things that have happened that were never predicted.
  2. They had no idea what was a potentially realistic prediction and what was an absolutely fanciful one. For example, there was a little segment on flying cars, and another segment on jetpacks that would allow you to fly. It appeared that everyone interviewed saw these as equally achievable technologies.