Bridge of Life

Have you ever imagined talking to someone beyond your words? Communicating through speech is our most common form of relating to each other; imagine if one day that changed. We’ve heard of being ‘telepathically connected’ to someone, usually a close friend, relative or lover, but what if everyone could take it a step beyond that? What if our brains could actually connect on a continuously subconscious level?

‘Brain-computer interface’ is the term for this phenomenon, one that was created to help people with physical disabilities to better adapt to the world around them. Turning challenges like picking something up into an action as easily as just visualizing it. These technological and scientific advances will continue to evolve. Going forward they could enter the mainstream and change the way we interact with each other. How will that change our relationships: interpersonal, familial, and romantic?

As the New York Times notes, “Soon, we might interact with our smartphones and computers simply by using our minds. In a couple of years, we could be turning on the lights at home just by thinking about it, or sending an e-mail from our smartphone without even pulling the device from our pocket. Farther into the future, your robot assistant will appear by your side with a glass of lemonade simply because it knows you are thirsty.”

Just as computers can transmit information, what if the future allowed us to transmit directly into another person’s brain through thought? As The Optimist explains, our ability to speak stemmed from the necessity for us to ‘transmit ideas’. Presently it is becoming an archaic way to interact as the world continues to advance.

What is the one thing that doesn’t change? Our intentions, and that may be the trickiest thing for technology to catch up with. While we may think something, is it something we want to share with someone mind-to-mind? For those of you that are Star Trek fans you might recall Spock having ‘mind melds’ in order to merge with another persons thoughts. What is important here is that Spock had a choice and so did the other person. While we may picture a cheeseburger in our minds eye, does that mean we want to eat one? Or does it mean that we’re just daydreaming about them?

What’s most interesting as we evolve as humans is that even with the monumental advancements that we have made, there are still ways to miscommunicate or misinterpret others words. Presently the misinterpretations are through speech, however in the future it very well may be through thought. Make learning to understand the long-term goal. No matter how reliant we become on a new form of communicating in the future; experiencing intimacy with someone is about processing information so that both you and the other person understands, no matter the vehicle.

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