Frustrated with the slow pace
of natural human evolution,
scientists, researchers, and biohackers
across the globe are pushing the boundaries
of sensory perception in bold new directions.
The results are fascinating -
as Julie Ann and her ConsciousSHIFT Guest,
award-winning science journalist Kara Platoni,
author of WE HAVE THE TECHNOLOGY:
How Biohackers, Foodies, Physicians,
and Scientists are Transforming Human
Perception, Once Sense at a Time -
will explore in this thought-provoking
Labs are developing brain-controlled robotic limbs
that could one day provide people with prosthetics
the sense of touch; advances in visual implants
are restoring sight to those who have lost it;
and the biohacker startup Grindhouse Wetware
recently launched Northstar, a light-up skin implant
inspired by bioluminescent animals.
They hope to one day engineer a version
that will include a magnetic compass,
giving the user a semi-innate sense of direction.
Kara Platoni will introduce us to researchers
who are changing the way we experience the world,
whether engineering scents that stimulate lost memories
in Alzheimer’s patients, searching for the elusive sixth taste,
or building virtual reality technologies that prepare soldiers
for the battlefield.
These diverse investigations offer tantalizing glimpses
into a future where we can expand, control, and enhance
our senses as never before.
Though it may sound like science fiction,
perception-shaping devices are becoming profoundly
embedded in human life, partly because they can be worn
continuously (think Apple Watch, Pebble, fitness wristbands,
Google Glass, smart headsets—even the cellphone
with its ability to monitor location and take photos),
and partly because they are becoming more
deeply integrated into the body.
Many of the devices on the commercial market
are wearable, but other new technologies,
currently reserved for those with medical needs,
are implanted in the body.
And their next generation is headed for the brain.
Join Julie Ann and Kara for a mind-blowing
exploration of the future of perception
on another fascinating ConsciousSHIFT Show.
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