Monday, October 23, 2006

Wrinkle in Time

I still remember reading A Wrinkle in Time— how chilling it was to watch the characters encounter that detached brain, pulsing under a giant glass globe.

Still, at the end of the day, I could rest easy. It was just sci-fi.

Not so today. In an Atlanta lab, someone just grew rat brains in petri dishes... these neurons, pulsing over electrode plates, can actually process information and respond to it. The rat brains, hooked up to robots, can commandeer a chase, or a drawing session, or an obstacle-avoidance mission. Oh, oh, oh...

Now it's rats; when will it be chimps? Or some other higher intelligence? And what wrinkles will this press into our time?

"Brain in a Dish", by Jennifer Barone, Discover, November 2006, p.14.


Blogger Inihtar said...

I actually have good memories of A Wrinkle in Time--not so much because of IT (that was what the brain was called, right?), but I guess just the time in life during which I read it. The rat brain, on the other hand--not so pleasant.

10:08 AM  
Blogger Andrea said...

One word: "Ew."

2:38 PM  
Blogger CyberCelt said...

Happy C&C Monday.

As I read your post, I just flashed onto Jeff Goldbaum as The Fly.

We should not be messing around with brains. I understand stem cells because of all the horrible diseases we could wipe out. way.

9:04 PM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Hi, Inihtar, Andrea, Cybercelt...

I'm thinking that, outside of all the "ew-i-ness," there's got to be something positive they're looking for here... maybe some discoveries about how brains function (or not)... still, the ethical problems, the chance for abuses makes my skin crawl.

9:10 PM  

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