Surgeons Say This Woman Became “Hyper Empathic” After They Removed Part of Her Brain
Susan (not her real name) had suffered from epileptic seizures since the age of two. Localized to her right temporal lobe, they’d been successfully controlled with drugs until she was 17. After that, they became so severe and uncontrollable that neurosurgeons removed part of her temporal lobe. They hoped this would alleviate her seizures, and it did. But there was another unanticipated effect. Post-surgery, Susan said she developed an enhanced ability to read other people’s emotions. She also experienced heightened physical sensations, such as “spin at the heart”, when she herself was moved emotionally, or when she met friends or family, or encountered fictional characters. Now Susan is aged 37, a French team led by Aurélie Richard-Mornas has systematically tested her, and they confirm that she has “hyper empathy”. I’m skeptical about these claims, but I’ll get to that later. The researchers are careful to make some distinctions – they say there are two forms of understanding other people’s mental states (an ability known as Theory of Mind): a cognitive variety, which allows us to represent the beliefs and intentions of others; and an affective variety, which allows us to represent their feelings and emotions. They further explain that empathy is separate from Theory of Mind and is about feeling other people’s emotions. The finding from their tests is that Susan has heightened “Affective Theory of Mind” – that is, an enhanced ability to recognize the feelings and emotions of others; and heightened empathy, in the form of an intense response to other people’s emotions. (via Surgeons Say This Woman Became “Hyper Empathic” After They Removed Part of Her Brain | Science Blogs | WIRED)
Tiny chip mimics brain, delivers supercomputer speed
Researchers Thursday unveiled a powerful new postage-stamp size chip delivering supercomputer performance using a process that mimics the human brain.
The so-called “neurosynaptic” chip is a breakthrough that opens a wide new range of computing possibilities from self-driving cars to artificial intelligence systems that can installed on a smartphone, the scientists say.
The researchers from IBM, Cornell Tech and collaborators from around the world said they took an entirely new approach in design compared with previous computer architecture, moving toward a system called “cognitive computing.”
"We have taken inspiration from the cerebral cortex to design this chip," said IBM chief scientist for brain-inspired computing, Dharmendra Modha, referring to the command center of the brain.
Google Cardboard DIY Virtual Reality 3D Glasses for $8.99 / 7,15€
Not sure why I’m receiving the newsletter from them (my filters are deleting them instantly). But this one grabbed my attention. Insofar because it’s high-low-tech from Google, a #DealExtremeFuture (this one will ship from China) and I didn’t see them up to this point in shops. If you want to make your own, download the cardboard design files here for free.These DIY Google virtual reality glasses, made of cardboard and resin lens, are specially designed for iPhone, Google Nexus 6 & Samsung Mobile Phones. With Cardboard App, it’s easy to install and operate.FeaturesHigh quality with reasonable price
Can be installed within 3 minutes
Comes with Cardboard App, very easy to DIY a virtual reality glasses, such as Oculus Rift VR glasses
Can control your phone with the magnets
Supports LR format besides the usual video format
Compatible with 4-7 inch screen cellphoneGeneral SpecsType DIY Virtual Reality 3D Glasses Material Cardboard + Resin Lens Compatibility iPhone, Google Nexus 6 & Samsung Mobile Phones, and other brand phones with 4-7 inches screenPackage DetailsWeight: 107.00 g
Size: 13*8*8 cmPackage Includes1 x Cardboard,1 x Rubber band,2 x Magnets ( d=2cm),2 x Lens (d=2.3cm),2 x Pairs of Velcros
A lot has changed in the three years since IBM first unveiled a prototype of its human brain-inspired SyNAPSE (Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics) chip. That single-core prototype has now been significantly scaled up,…
The “first man-made biological leaf” could enable humans to colonise space
RCA graduate Julian Melchiorri says the synthetic biological leaf he developed, which absorbs water and carbon dioxide to produce oxygen just like a plant, could enable long-distance space travel.
The ‘Holographic’ 3D Video Machine is closer than you think
From the creators project:
Recently completed by Chris Helson and Sarah Jackets, two Scotland-based artist who have been honing away on the project for seven years, this innovative 3D video machine will make its debut on July 31, as part of the Alt-W at the Edinburgh Art Festival. Inspired by the famous holographic message sent to Obi-Wan Kenobi from Princess Leia in Star Wars, the 360-degree piece, entitled Help Me Obi, has already won an Alt-w production award from New Media Scotland.
Inspired by scientific concepts that have garnered iconic cultural significance, Helson said the project is not to be confused with a 3D hologram: “We use the term holographic because there is nothing else like it,” said Helson. “The machine creates 360 [-degree] moving video objects apparently floating in space and the viewer is able to walk around the machine and see the video object from any position.”