Weekly Newsletter

Neuroscience and Neurotech #

Hypnosis reaches the parts brain scans and neurosurgery cannot
A good, succint article about the use of hypnosis in real neuroscience. Makes me hope I’m in the 10% of people who are highly suggestible.

Playing 20 Questions with the Mind
Summarizes a new study in which two individuals in isolation played 20 questions using a brain-to-brain interface. This is a big first step towards more usable brain-to-brain interfaces. I dream of the day when two people can put on headsets and communicate with each other at the speed of thought.

Apex: Nexus Arc Book 3
I just finished Apex, the third in a series of books about the emergence of a new technology that allows individuals to interface with each other through a direct brain-to-brain connection. This series, starting with Nexus, provides a convincing portrayal of the effect near-future technology can have on global society. I’m including a link to this book because I think it goes well with the two articles about brain-computer-interfaces.

Paraplegic man walks with own legs again
A man who was paralyzed from the waist down walks again thanks to brain-to-computer technology. While this system has a long way to go before it is ready for the consumer market, this demo shows the potential of the technology.

Design #

The Bourne Aesthetic
A discussion of Jason Bourne versus James Bond and how that relates to Apple’s disregard for longevity and maintainability. This is a ramble for sure but I enjoyed the writing style and agree with the author’s conclusions. The highlight of this piece is definitely this passage:

“If you’re already rolling out your “resigned disappointment” face: believe me, I totally understand. I suspect we’ve both dealt with That Guy Who Calls Himself A Designer at some point, that particular strain of self-aggrandizing flake who’s parlayed a youth full of disdain for people who just don’t understand them into a career full of evidence they don’t understand anyone else. "

War #

The Art of Influence
A retired general discusses the techniques he employed in the mission to take Musa Qala, Afghanistan.

Other Contributions #

Living in a Code Yellow World (Will Baird)
Bruce Schneier, one of my favorite Computer Security figures, discusses the dangers of always being “on alert”.