Eran Klein, University of Washington and Katherine Pratt, University of Washington
(THE CONVERSATION) In the 1995 film Batman Forever, the Riddler used 3-D television to secretly access viewers most personal thoughts in his hunt for Batmans true identity. By 2011, the metrics company Nielsen had acquired Neurofocus and had created a consumer neuroscience division that uses integrated conscious and unconscious data to track customer decision-making habits. What was once a nefarious scheme in a Hollywood blockbuster seems poised to become a reality.
Recent announcements by Elon Muskand Facebook about brain-computer interface (BCI) technology are just the latest headlines in an ongoing science-fiction-becomes-reality story.
BCIs use brain signals to control objects in the outside world. Theyre a potentially world-changing innovation imagine being paralyzed but able to reach for something with a prosthetic arm just by thinking about it. But the revolutionary technology also raises concerns. Here at the University of Washingtons Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering (CSNE) we and our colleagues are researching BCI technology and a crucial part of that includes working on issues such as neuroethics and neural security. Ethicists and engineers are working together to understand and quantify risks and develop ways to protect the public now.
All BCI technology relies on being able to collect information from a brain that a device can then use or act on in some way. There are numerous places from which signals can be recorded, as well as infinite ways the data can be analyzed, so there are many possibilities for how a BCI can be used.
Some BCI researchers zero in on one particular kind of regularly occurring brain signal that alerts us to important changes in our environment. Neuroscientists call these signals event-related potentials. In the lab, they help us identify a reaction to a stimulus.
In particular, we capitalize on one of these specific signals, called the P300. Its a positive peak of electricity that occurs toward the back of the head about 300 milliseconds after the stimulus is shown. The P300 alerts the rest of your brain to an oddball that stands out from the rest of whats around you.
For example, you dont stop and stare at each persons face when youre searching for your friend at the park. Instead, if we were recording your brain signals as you scanned the crowd, there would be a detectable P300 response when you saw someone who could be your friend. The P300 carries an unconscious message alerting you to something important that deserves attention. These signals are part of a still unknown brain pathway that aids in detection and focusing attention.
P300s reliably occur any time you notice something rare or disjointed, like when you find the shirt you were looking for in your closet or your car in a parking lot. Researchers can use the P300 in an experimental setting to determine what is important or relevant to you. Thats led to the creation of devices like spellers that allow paralyzed individuals to type using their thoughts, one character at a time.
It also can be used to determine what you know, in whats called a guilty knowledge test. In the lab, subjects are asked to choose an item to steal or hide, and are then shown many images repeatedly of both unrelated and related items. For instance, subjects choose between a watch and a necklace, and are then shown typical items from a jewelry box; a P300 appears when the subject is presented with the image of the item he took.
Everyones P300 is unique. In order to know what theyre looking for, researchers need training data. These are previously obtained brain signal recordings that researchers are confident contain P300s; theyre then used to calibrate the system. Since the test measures an unconscious neural signal that you dont even know you have, can you fool it? Maybe, if you know that youre being probed and what the stimuli are.
Techniques like these are still considered unreliable and unproven, and thus U.S. courts have resisted admitting P300 data as evidence.
Imagine that instead of using a P300 signal to solve the mystery of a stolen item in the lab, someone used this technology to extract information about what month you were born or which bank you use without your telling them. Our research group has collected data suggesting this is possible. Just using an individuals brain activity specifically, their P300 response we could determine a subjects preferences for things like favorite coffee brand or favorite sports.
But we could do it only when subject-specific training data were available. What if we could figure out someones preferences without previous knowledge of their brain signal patterns? Without the need for training, users could simply put on a device and go, skipping the step of loading a personal training profile or spending time in calibration. Research on trained and untrained devices is the subject of continuing experiments at the University of Washingtonand elsewhere.
Its when the technology is able to read someones mind who isnt actively cooperating that ethical issues become particularly pressing. After all, we willingly trade bits of our privacy all the time when we open our mouths to have conversations or use GPS devices that allow companies to collect data about us. But in these cases we consent to sharing whats in our minds. The difference with next-generation P300 technology under development is that the protection consent gives us may get bypassed altogether.
What if its possible to decode what youre thinking or planning without you even knowing? Will you feel violated? Will you feel a loss of control? Privacy implications may be wide-ranging. Maybe advertisers could know your preferred brands and send you personalized ads which may be convenient or creepy. Or maybe malicious entities could determine where you bank and your accounts PIN which would be alarming.
The potential ability to determine individuals preferences and personal information using their own brain signals has spawned a number of difficult but pressing questions: Should we be able to keep our neural signals private? That is, should neural security be a human right? How do we adequately protect and store all the neural data being recorded for research, and soon for leisure? How do consumers know if any protective or anonymization measures are being made with their neural data? As of now, neural data collected for commercial uses are not subject to the same legal protections covering biomedical research or health care. Should neural data be treated differently?
These are the kinds of conundrums that are best addressed by neural engineers and ethicists working together. Putting ethicists in labs alongside engineers as we have done at the CSNE is one way to ensure that privacy and security risks of neurotechnology, as well as other ethically important issues, are an active part of the research process instead of an afterthought. For instance, Tim Brown, an ethicist at the CSNE, is housed within a neural engineering research lab, allowing him to have daily conversations with researchers about ethical concerns. Hes also easily able to interact with and, in fact, interview research subjects about their ethical concerns about brain research.
There are important ethical and legal lessons to be drawn about technology and privacy from other areas, such as genetics and neuromarketing. But there seems to be something important and different about reading neural data. Theyre more intimately connected to the mind and who we take ourselves to be. As such, ethical issues raised by BCI demand special attention.
As we wrestle with how to address these privacy and security issues, there are two features of current P300 technology that will buy us time.
First, most commercial devices available use dry electrodes, which rely solely on skin contact to conduct electrical signals. This technology is prone to a low signal-to-noise ratio, meaning that we can extract only relatively basic forms of information from users. The brain signals we record are known to be highly variable (even for the same person) due to things like electrode movement and the constantly changing nature of brain signals themselves. Second, electrodes are not always in ideal locations to record.
All together, this inherent lack of reliability means that BCI devices are not nearly as ubiquitous today as they may be in the future. As electrode hardware and signal processing continue to improve, it will be easier to continuously use devices like these, and make it easier to extract personal information from an unknowing individual as well. The safest advice would be to not use these devices at all.
The goal should be that the ethical standards and the technology will mature together to ensure future BCI users are confident their privacy is being protected as they use these kinds of devices. Its a rare opportunity for scientists, engineers, ethicists and eventually regulators to work together to create even better products than were originally dreamed of in science fiction.
This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article here: http://theconversation.com/helping-or-hacking-engineers-and-ethicists-must-work-together-on-brain-computer-interface-technology-77759.
Go here to read the rest:
- MOBILE BIOMETRICS MARKET TRENDS, TECHNOLOGY AND FORECAST | BY TOP COMPANIES APPLE INC.; IDEMIA; NUANCE COMMUNICATIONS Cole of Duty - Cole of Duty - July 8th, 2020
- Image Recognition Market Potential Growth, Share, Demand and Analysis of Key Players Research Forecasts - Apsters News - July 8th, 2020
- Global Neurotechnology Market to Witness Rapid Development During the Period 2017 2025 - Jewish Life News - July 5th, 2020
- Fingerprint Biometrics in VAR Market Overview With Detailed Analysis, Competitive Landscape, Forecast to 2026|Delaney Secure, Neurotechnology, 360... - July 5th, 2020
- Neurotechnology Market by Technology, Solutions, Application, Price, Demand Ana - News by aeresearch - July 5th, 2020
- Technological Advancements in Automatic Speech Recognition Software Market to boost Revenues Through COVID-19 Crisis Phase and Forecast to 2029 - NJ... - July 5th, 2020
- Face Recognition Market IN COVID-19: IMPLICATIONS AND BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH GLOBALLY - 3rd Watch News - July 5th, 2020
- COVID-19 Impact on Neurotechnology Market Research Report, Growth Trends and Competitive Analysis 2020-2025 - 3rd Watch News - June 1st, 2020
- Neuroverse BrainStation System Featured as the Brain-based Sleep Monitoring Solution in a YouTube Originals Series to Promote Sleep Awareness -... - June 1st, 2020
- Facial Recognition Market Analysis 2019-2025 Emerging Trends, Growth Drivers, Challengers, Services, Competitive Landscape and Regional Outlook &... - June 1st, 2020
- Facial Recognition System Market Drivers is Responsible to for Increasing Market Share, Forecast 2026 - Cole of Duty - June 1st, 2020
- VTB Bank to launch research centre in Russia with Skolkovo Foundation - Verdict - May 27th, 2020
- Neurotechnology tops FVC-onGoing biometric test results with fingerprint recognition tech - Biometric Update - May 23rd, 2020
- Global Neurotechnology Market SHARE, SIZE 2020| EMERGING RAPIDLY WITH LATEST TRENDS, GROWTH, REVENUE, DEMAND AND FORECAST TO 2026 Cole Reports - Cole... - May 23rd, 2020
- Will Elon Musk's Neuralink Shape the Future of Humanity? - Oxford Student - May 23rd, 2020
- Facial Recognition Market Global Future Investment Initiatives, Growing with Technology Development, New Innovations, Competitive Analysis and... - May 23rd, 2020
- Smell cameras built to detect explosives on planes - The Nation - May 11th, 2020
- Elon Musk Really Is A Huge Gearhead (These Facts Prove It) - TheThings - May 11th, 2020
- Airbus working on sensors that can detect coronavirus - International Business Times, Singapore Edition - May 11th, 2020
- Fingerprint Biometrics In The VAR Market Analysis, Size, Outlook, Competitive Strategies and Forecasts to 2025 - Herald Writeup - May 11th, 2020
- Navigating the New Normal With COVID-19: 12 Essential Actions Executives Need To Take Right Now - OPEN MINDS - April 18th, 2020
- Discover How to Easily Teach Neuroscience to Your Kids - Thrive Global - April 18th, 2020
- CHIME: How Yale's Engineers and Doctors are Innovating to Combat COVID-19 - Yale News - April 18th, 2020
- The Coronavirus is Driving the 1st World Headlong into The Fourth Industrial Revolution - Live Trading News - April 18th, 2020
- The Global Face Recognition Market is expected to grow from USD 3,546.56 Million in 2019 to USD 9,992.35 Million by the end of 2025 at a Compound... - April 18th, 2020
- Neurotechnology Market Forecast with Top Companies, Growth Factors, Classification, Regional Analysis, Development Factors and Bedding Fabrics... - March 31st, 2020
- MOBILE BIOMETRICS MARKET TRENDS, TECHNOLOGY AND FORECAST | BY TOP COMPANIES APPLE INC.; IDEMIA; NUANCE COMMUNICATIONS, INC.; NEC CORPORATION - Skyline... - March 31st, 2020
- Face Recognition Market Discover How Increased Adoption of Among Developing Economies Offers A Major Opportunity in Industry - Skyline Gazette - March 31st, 2020
- Stryker to participate in Cowen 40th Annual Health Care Conference - Yahoo Finance - February 26th, 2020
- Non-fiction reviews: One Blade of Grass and three other titles - The Sydney Morning Herald - February 14th, 2020
- Elon Musk promises to have the Neuralink brain chip in a human this year - Inceptive Mind - February 9th, 2020
- CES 2020: The symbiosis of human and machine - The Drum - January 29th, 2020
- Stryker (SYK) to Report Q4 Earnings: What's in the Cards? - Yahoo Finance - January 29th, 2020
- United States Air Force Plans to "Aim High" Leveraging the Science of Neuroplasticity - Yahoo Finance - January 26th, 2020
- MarketsandMarkets forecasts the global facial recognition market size to grow from USD 3.2 billion in 2019 to USD 7.0 billion by 2024, at a CAGR of... - January 26th, 2020
- Wearable technology drives Phoenix to be leader in innovation - AZ Big Media - January 26th, 2020
- Eli Lilly's Acquisition Strategy, And Other News: The Good, Bad And Ugly Of Biopharma - Seeking Alpha - January 26th, 2020
- Neurotechnology Market Trends, Key Players, Overview, Competitive Breakdown and Regional Forecast by 2025 - Filmi Baba - December 26th, 2019
- designboom 2020 TECH PREDICTIONS: cyborgs and brainjacking - Designboom - December 26th, 2019
- Neurotechnology firm partners two care facilities with eye movement platform - Med-Tech Innovation - December 13th, 2019
- SyncThinks eye-tracking helps monitor brain health and concussion risk - VentureBeat - December 12th, 2019
- These were the 15 best CEOs of 2019 - Business Insider - December 12th, 2019
- Worldwide Facial Recognition Market Latest Research By Business Expansion Plans, Industry Demand Status & Forecast 2028 - Tech News Today - December 12th, 2019
- Neurotechnology Market Report 2019 | Industry Size, Share, Trend And Forecast Is A Professional And In-Depth Study By 2026 - Alpha News Report - December 6th, 2019
- Trying to read the 'mind of a group' shapes our decisions online - Futurity: Research News - December 6th, 2019
- Global Facial Recognition Market Top Key Players, Regions and Application Outlook Upto 2019 to 2028 - Industry Planning - December 6th, 2019
- Neurotechnology startup NextMind unveils world's first brain-sensing wearable that delivers real-time device control with just your thoughts -... - November 23rd, 2019
- NextMind Unveils World's First Brain-Sensing Wearable That Delivers Real-Time Device Control With Just Your Thoughts - Business Wire - November 23rd, 2019
- Neurotechnology and the Future of Hope - Robotics Tomorrow (press release) - August 25th, 2017
- Canaccord Genuity Keeps Rating And Raises Price Target On Stryker Corporation (SYK) - Modern Readers - August 25th, 2017
- Technology Key to Fighting Neurological Disease - R & D Magazine - August 25th, 2017
- Could this back-pain device end need for opioids? - The Columbus Dispatch - August 20th, 2017
- In the Future, Humans Will Use Brain to Brain Communication and Download Their Memories If Elon Musk Has His Way - Newsweek - August 14th, 2017
- Open-source Morpheo Platform to Use Artificial Intelligence to Help Diagnose Sleep Disorders - Sleep Review - August 8th, 2017
- Stryker Exceeded Analysts' Sales Estimates in 2Q17 - Market Realist - August 2nd, 2017
- Elon Musk talks of his life's 'highs' and 'lows' in a few painfully honest tweets - Mashable - July 31st, 2017
- Team Neurotechnology Innovations Translator - July 30th, 2017
- Stryker Corporation (NYSE:SYK) and Uroplasty (UPI) Financial Survey - Stock Observer - July 29th, 2017
- Tufts Hosts Engineering Conference - Tufts Now - July 28th, 2017
- Stryker reports 6.1% Q2 growth, installs 26 Mako systems: 7 things ... - Becker's Orthopedic & Spine - July 28th, 2017
- Arshya Vahabzadeh: Innovating at the Intersection of Brain, Behavior, and Technology - HuffPost - July 27th, 2017
- Capstone Asset Management Company Has Boosted By $555078 Its Raytheon Co (RTN) Holding, Stryker (SYK)'s ... - Herald KS - July 26th, 2017
- Trivascular Technologies (TRIV) & Stryker Corporation (SYK) Critical Review - Stock Observer - July 26th, 2017
- fMRI, EEG Tests May Detect Consciousness in Severe TBI Patients - PsychCentral.com - July 24th, 2017
- BRAIN center gathers to ponder future, direction - Arizona State University - July 20th, 2017
- Preserving the Right to Cognitive Liberty - Scientific American - July 19th, 2017
- Comparing Uroplasty (UPI) and Stryker Corporation (NYSE:SYK) - The Cerbat Gem - July 18th, 2017
- Insider Activity Stryker Corporation (NYSE:SYK) - Highlight Press - July 15th, 2017
- Neurotechnology: 5 braincomputer interface innovations - Red Bull - Red Bull - July 12th, 2017
- DARPA invests further in neurotechnology - SD Times - SDTimes.com - July 11th, 2017
- Infinitely Flexible 3D Printing with Ultrasonic Manipulation? - ENGINEERING.com - July 11th, 2017
- HIRREM Neurotechnology Better Than Placebo for Insomnia - Sleep Review - July 10th, 2017
- What is NIT? Neurotechnology Innovations Translator - July 5th, 2017
- Mind-blowing ultrasonic 'printer' uses lasers and high-frequency sound to assemble electronics - Digital Trends - July 1st, 2017
- Neurotechnology Explains Ultrasonic Manipulation in 3D Printing - 3DPrint.com - June 30th, 2017
- Neurotechnology Develops 3D Printing Method with Non-Contact Ultrasonic Manipulation Technology - 3DPrint.com - June 26th, 2017
- Neurotechnology makes a number of updates to the MegaMatcher product line - Biometric Update - June 23rd, 2017
- Neurotechnology adds face recognition, tracking to video surveillance systems; researchers win competition - Biometric Update - June 23rd, 2017
- SentiVeillance Server - Face Recognition and Analytics to Video Management Systems - Officer.com (press release) (registration) (blog) - June 22nd, 2017
- Brain data, neurotechnology and education | code acts in ... - June 21st, 2017