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Category: consciousness

Robotics | IoT

Neuroscientists Can Now Read Your Dreams With a Simple Brain Scan

Like islands jutting out of a smooth ocean surface, dreams puncture our sleep with disjointed episodes of consciousness. How states of awareness emerge from a sleeping brain has long baffled scientists and philosophers alike. For decades, scientists have associated dreaming with rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, a sleep stage in which the resting brain paradoxically […]

The Brain: A Radical Rethink Is Needed to Understand It

Understanding the human brain is arguably the greatest challenge of modern science. The leading approach for most of the past 200 years has been to link its functions to different brain regions or even individual neurons (brain cells). But recent research increasingly suggests that we may be taking completely the wrong path if we are […]

Are These Giant Neurons the Seat Of Consciousness in the Brain?

The towering trees with their sprawling branches in the redwood forests have always reminded me of neurons in the brain. Like trees, each neuron extends out tortuous, delicate branches in a quest to make contact with others in its ecosystem. By communicating through thousands of contact points—synapses—dotted along their branches, neurons coordinate their activation patterns […]

If You Upload Your Mind to the Cloud—Would You Still Be You?

From time to time, the Singularity Hub editorial team unearths a gem from the archives and wants to share it all over again. It’s usually a piece that was popular back then and we think is still relevant now. This is one of those articles. It was originally published January 25, 2015. We hope you enjoy it!  One of the most mind-bending far future predictions you’ll hear from some futurists is this: Eventually, the technology will exist to copy… read more

This Week’s Awesome Stories From Around the Web (Through October 22nd)

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: Conscious Exotica Murray Shanahan | Aeon “In what follows I attempt to…[describe] the structure of the space of possible minds, in two dimensions: the capacity for consciousness and the human-likeness of behavior. Implicit in this mapping seems to be the possibility of forms of consciousness so alien that we would not recognize them.” ROBOTICS: How Analog and Neuromorphic Chips Will Rule the Robotic Age Shahin Farshchi | IEEE Spectrum “Why the move to analog… read more

If Machines Can Think, Do They Deserve Civil Rights?

Over the past century, we have made massive strides in the rights revolution. These include rights for women, children, the LGBT community, animals, and so much more. Exploring the future, we must ask ourselves: what next? Will we ever fight for the ri…

Your Conscious Brain Directs Your Actions Less Than You Think

From time to time, the Singularity Hub editorial team unearths a gem from the archives and wants to share it all over again. It’s usually a piece that was popular back then and we think is still relevant now. This is one of those articles. It was originally published August 2, 2015. We hope you enjoy it!  Think your deliberate, guiding, conscious thoughts are in charge of your actions? Think again. In a provocative paper in… read more

How AI Will Redefine Love

Artificial intelligence is beginning to disrupt entire industries from finance to medicine. Yet the most revolutionary application has yet to arrive—and it’s an existential one. As thinking machines become more integrated into our lives, we must expect a transformation in how we define what it means to be conscious; what it means to live and to die; and ultimately, what it means to love a non-human being. These questions are artfully explored in the plot… read more

Is the Brain’s Awareness of the World All or Nothing?

We often think of consciousness as binary: you’re either fully aware of something, or you’re not. Yet according to a team of cognitive neuroscientists at the University of California, Santa Barbara, conscious awareness is gradual. A simple stimulus — say, a red cube — is processed by the brain in multiple separate subconscious streams, each encoding one aspect of the cube. The result? Even when some features — a sharp edge — remain subconscious, others — the color red — can drift into conscious awareness. The team published their study in the recent issue of Consciousness and Cognition. This innovative… read more

Take a Deep Dive into the Brain with This Week’s Episode of Ask an Expert [Video]

When will we understand the brain? In an era of scientific progress and emerging technologies, one would think that we were on the cusp of finally answering this age-old question. Not so fast. Understanding the… read more
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