||| Kamitani Lab |||
An unnerving approximation of human thoughts was created by Japanese scientists using artificial intelligence. That's right, a reality where computers can visualize what you are thinking and 'read your mind' is not far away.
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Four scientists at Kyoto University in Kyoto, Japan released the results of their recent research on using artificial intelligence to decode thoughts.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Deep image reconstruction: Natural images (seen images), GIF version<br><br>Left: Seen images<br>Right: Images reconstructed from brain activity (being optimized) <a href="https://t.co/YY0ZDxi7T5">pic.twitter.com/YY0ZDxi7T5</a></p>— 'Yuki' Kamitani (@ykamit) <a href="https://twitter.com/ykamit/status/948807195205840896?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 4, 2018</a></blockquote>
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Machine learning has been used in the past to study brain scans such as MRI's and to generate visualizations of what a person is thinking when referring to simple, binary images like black and white letters or simple shapes.
Now, the scientists at Kyoto developed a new technique of "decoding" thoughts using deep neural networks, or artificial intelligence.
The technique allows scientists to decode much more sophisticated "hierarchical" images, many have multiple layers of color and structure like a photo of a real-world bird or a person.
The resemblance is astonishing when you see what the AI is capable of recreating from a person's thoughts. Kamitani said, "We have been studying methods to reconstruct or recreate an image a person is seeing just by looking at the person's brain activity."
"Our previous method was to assume that an image consists of pixels or simple shapes. But it's known that our brain processes visual information hierarchically extracting different levels of features or components of different complexities," Kamitani explained.
The new AI research allows computers to detect much more complex objects instead of just binary pixels. Kamitani went on to say, "These neural networks or AI model can be used as a proxy for the hierarchical structure of the human brain."
One day it is entirely possible that technology will allow for a way to read people's minds and a real debate will need to occur over what is considered private.
Are my own thoughts private? What somebody commits a murder? Can someone's own thoughts be used against them? These are just a few of the questions we must consider sooner than later as thought "decoding" technology continues exponentially.
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