Those Scary Computer
Chips Are Coming
By James Donahue
The science of the human
brain is advancing almost at the speed of computer technology. In fact, it almost appears as if the two ends of this research
are beginning to merge in both thought and deed.
New concepts in science
promise that soon a mere computer chip, the size of a pill, will make it possible for a quadriplegic to operate a computer
by mere thought. The device is already in existence and developers say it can tap into a hundred neurons at a time.
Also Intel recently demonstrated
to government officials a tiny computer chip the company claims can be installed in toothbrushes, chairs and other household
items to monitor behavior patterns. The company suggested the chips be used to monitor elderly people living alone to assure
care givers that all is well.
And NASA has developed
a computer program it claims can use small sensors attached to the mouth and throat to read words before they are spoken,
and consequently read minds. Neuroengineer Chuck Jorgensen of the Ames Research Center said biological signals are emitted by people when just reading or thinking without
actual lip or facial movement. The sensors are capable of picking up these signals and turning them into electronically produced
With this technology
at the edge of reality, it is small wonder then that a team of scientists at Howard Hughes Medical Institute believes it possible
to photograph human thought and even dreams.
This team, led by Gerald
Rubin, is building a $400 million laboratory on a 280-acre farm at Ashburn,
Virginia, and calling on a team of neurobiologists, physicists, molecular biologists,
chemists, geneticists, instrument designers and computer scientists to accomplish this goal. The objective is to find a way
to look inside the human brain and see what it is doing.
While all of this sounds
beneficial for the handicapped and the elderly, there also is an ominous sense here that governments can also use it to spy
on our private lives in ways never achieved in the past.
And with the current
mindset of the anti-terrorists who see conspiracies under every stone, we can be assured that the technology will be used
against us in ways we have yet to imagine.
That old apocalyptic
story of a government controlling the masses through a computer chip implanted somewhere in the body seems too close to reality.
While we can expect the
Christians to resist such a chip, seeing it as the mark of the beast, I wonder if there is really that much to fear about
this new technology. For all we know, we already have such chips riding home with us every day.
The development of powerful
chips that are so small they might be injected through a vaccination needle is not impossible. I have read where simple computer
chips already are coming home with us in food wrappers and credit cards. They emit tiny radio signals that tell manufacturers
who is buying their products and where they are being used.
Other chips implanted
in our televisions tell programmers what we are watching during prime time.
The day will soon arrive
when a chip will be required before we can do our shopping, banking and travel. When you think about it, a chip would be better
than a passport and better than a credit card. Not only will it make paperless transactions possible, it will remove the threat
of theft of cash and credit cards, and help us move about without the constant threat of terrorism.
The successful abolishment
of enslaving religious systems that set false judgments on people for the things they choose to do with their private lives
would erase the threat of government snoops looking in on their personal activities.