The Obama administration is planning a decade-long scientific effort to examine the workings of the human brain and build a comprehensive map of its activity, seeking to do for the brain what the Human Genome Project did for genetics.Indeed it does.
George M. Church, a molecular biologist at Harvard, said he was helping to plan the project, the Brain Activity Map. The project, which the administration has been looking to unveil as early as March, will include federal agencies, private foundations and teams of neuroscientists and nanoscientists in a concerted effort to advance the knowledge of the brain’s billions of neurons and gain greater insights into perception, actions and, ultimately, consciousness.
Scientists with the highest hopes for the project also see it as a way to develop the technology essential to understanding diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, as well as to find new therapies for a variety of mental illnesses.
Moreover, the project holds the potential of paving the way for advances in artificial intelligence.
This illustrates exactly why I claimed that the approach to the singularity is ultimately the greatest threat to us; we are completely culturally blind to the idea that innovation could be bad for us, across the political spectrum.