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It’s 2040, and you stroll into the Center for Mind Design where you can buy a variety of brain enhancements. How far do you want to go? The Human Calculator promises to give you savant-level mathematical abilities. Zen Garden can make you calmer and more efficient. Or you can buy “Merge,” a series of enhancements that allow you to gradually augment and transfer mental functions to the cloud.
This may all sound like science fiction, but Susan Schneider, a cognitive scientist and philosopher at the University of Connecticut and the NASA/Blumberg Chair of Astrobiology at the Library of Congress, says brain microchips and other techniques to integrate humans with artificial intelligence are under development. AI, she says, is revolutionizing the economy, and will inevitably go inside the head as corporations attempt to allow us seamless access to our devices.
Schneider addresses the implications of AI in our lives, and how to ensure the science develops in a way that promotes human flourishing.
Her book Artificial You: AI and the Future of Your Mind (Princeton University Press), is available for sale and signing.
S. Dillon Ripley Center
1100 Jefferson Dr SW
Metro: Smithsonian (Mall exit)