We all do it. While talking to yourself is often frowned upon as a little on the crazy side, the truth is we all walk through life carrying on one giant, never-ending conversation with ourselves in our mind. And, for most people, the complete anonymity of “thoughtspeak” is a comfort. People say things in their heads they would never say out loud. It’s part of the human experience…while your idiot boss is talking, you are thinking “Gosh, this dude’s an idiot.” When an attractive member of the opposite sex walks by, men and women alike routinely make comments in their minds that would certainly trigger a sexual harassment lawsuit if verbalized. A criminal might be going over his strategy even as he passes the security guard at the door before he walks in a bank. The thoughts in our head are our playground where can “say” the things we would never say and reason out things for ourselves. However, there may come a day in the not-so-distant future when scientists have the technology to “hear” imagined speech.
That’s right. Researchers in the United States were actually able to examine the brain waves of a person that could not physically speak and construct them into actual words. All from brain activity alone. It was already proven in studies like these that imagined speech causes the same activities in the brain as if the words were actually spoken. While this technology in its infancy, scientists are excited about the possibilities. This technology may be able to allow mute people to “speak” by using their thoughts to activate a computer-controlled speaker.
Now, we at Common Sense Conspiracy are all for a modern health breakthrough, but the troubling thing about this type of technology is that while it may be a great thing when applied in the correct setting (helping someone to speak that otherwise could not), it is easy to imagine what the technology could ultimately be used for. Big Brother might not need as many cameras if they can simply hear your thoughts.
On the positive side, the experiments were conducted by actually inserting electrodes into patients’ skulls. While it worked, it was far from a convenient situation. This will not be a real threat to our freedom until they are able to develop a way to install it much smaller and discretely. But, as we all see every day, technology, as it advances, has a way of getting smaller and smaller. The Thought Police could be closer in the future than you think.