When brain implants arrive, will we still be “us”?

When brain implants arrive, will we still be “us”?

 

By | November 19, 2012, 11:38 AM PST

 Brain Storm

What happens when non-biological implants in our bodies — along the lines of cochlear implants to improve hearing in the deaf — include brain-related devices that might enhance our memories? Will we still be “us”? Will we be more of a cyborg than we were if, say, we had another type of implant? And for those who believe we would not be, at what point do we lose our selves to a more machine-like incarnation? When do we stop being human?

This is all pretty heavy, mind-bending stuff. But while such thoughts might seem like the domain of science fiction, when considering the trends toward smaller and more powerful computer chips and wearable computing, such theoretical musings might be relevant in innovation theory. And Ray Kurzweil, the often controversial author and futurist, has some opinions on this scenario in his new book How to Create a Human Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed. (Andrew Nusca, SmartPlanet’s editor, recently reported on his talk at the Techonomy conference). Kurzweil argues that even without any non-biological implants, our physical selves are always changing.

In a very short excerpt on Slate, he draws a simple and compelling (if not exactly parallel) comparison:

We naturally undergo a gradual replacement process. Most of our cells in our body are continually being replaced. (You just replaced 100 million of them in the course of reading the last sentence.) Cells in the inner lining of the small intestine turn over in about a week. The life span of white blood cells range from a few days to a few months, depending on the type. Neurons persist, but their organelles and their constituent molecules turn over within a month.  So you are completely replaced in a matter of months. Are you the same person you were a few months ago?

He argues that as our gadgets become smaller, they could eventually become part of our physical selves just as widely accepted health equipment, inserted into our bodies surgically, is today. Plus, he adds, we are increasingly “outsourcing” more of our information and even our memories — in terms of our precious photos, videos, recordings, and even thoughts, in terms of our writings and other materials — to the cloud, versus storing them in our brains.

It’s possible to clearly imagine such disparate trends emerge and converge in some way. But critics suggest that businesses might be wise to also consider the possible pitfalls of future internal, brain-enhancing machinery as they research and develop it. As Publishers Weekly wrote, in How to Create a Mind, Kurzweil can be “uncritically optimistic about the possibilities of our technologies.” Yet perhaps that’s the strength of his ideas: they can be seen as scene-building narratives that focus on a positive prediction of tomorrow. As Kirkus Reviews pointed out, Kurzweil’s new book can be understood as (italics mine) ”a fascinating exercise in futurology.” And, it seems clear, a conversation starter.

Original:  http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/bulletin/when-brain-implants-arrive-will-we-still-be-8220us-8221/6102

“Humanity is about going beyond biological limitations”

Image: Drawing of The Vitruvian Man

Leonardo da Vinci’s drawing of The Vitruvian man.

NEW YORK Dreams of immortality inspired the fantastical tales of Greek historian Herodotus and Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon’s legendary search for the fountain of youth. Nowadays, visionaries push for the technologies to transplant human brains into new bodies and download human consciousness into hologram-like avatars.

The latest science and schemes for achieving long life and the “singularity” moment of smarter-than-human intelligence came together at the Singularity Summit held here October 15-16. Some researchers explored cutting-edge, serious work about regenerating human body parts and defining the boundaries of consciousness in brain studies. Other speakers pushed visions of extending human existence in “Avatar”- style bodies — one initiative previously backed by action film star Steven Seagal — with fuzzier ideas about how to create such a world.

Above all, the summit buzzed with optimism about technology’s ability to reshape the world to exceed humanity’s wildest dreams, as well as a desire to share that vision with everyone. True believers were even offered the chance to apply for a credit card that transfers purchase rewards to the Singularity Institute.

“Humanity is about going beyond biological limitations,” said Ray Kurzweil, the inventor and futurist whose vision drives the Singularity Institute.

Rebuilding a healthy body The most immediate advances related to living longer and better may come from regenerative medicine. Pioneering physicians have already regrown the tips of people’s fingers and replaced cancer-ridden parts of human bodies with healthy new cells.

“What we’re talking about here is not necessarily increasing the quantity of life but the quality of life,” said Stephen Badylak, deputy director of the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania.

Success so far has come from using a special connective tissue — called the extracellular matrix (ECM) — to act as a biological scaffold for healthy cells to build upon. Badylak showed a video where his team of surgeons stripped out the cancerous lining of a patient’s esophagus like pulling out a sock, and relined the esophagus with an ECM taken from pigs. The patient remains cancer-free several years after the experimental trial.

The connective tissue of other animals doesn’t provoke a negative response in human bodies, because it lacks the foreign animal cells that would typically provoke the immune system to attack. It has served the same role as a biological foundation for so long that it represents a “medical device that’s gone through hundreds of millions of years of R&D,” Badylak said.

If work goes well, Badylak envisions someday treating stroke patients by regenerating pieces of the functioning human brain.

Live long and prosper The work of such researchers could do more than just keep humans happy and healthy. By tackling end-of-life chronic diseases such as cancer, medical advances could nearly double human life expectancy beyond almost 80 years in the U.S. to 150 years, said Sonia Arrison, a futurist at the Pacific Research Institute in San Francisco, Calif.

Long-lived humans could lead to problems such as anger over a “longevity gap” between haves and have-nots and perhaps add to stress on food, water and energy sources. But Arrison took a more positive view of how “health begets wealth” in a talk based on her new book, “100 Plus” (Basic Books, 2011).

Having healthier people around for longer means that they can remain productive far later in life, Arrison pointed out. Many past innovators accomplished some of their greatest or most creative work relatively late in life — Leonardo da Vinci began painting the Mona Lisa at 51, and Benjamin Franklin conducted his kite experiment at 46.

“Innovation is a late-peak field,” Arrison told the audience gathered at the Singularity Summit.

Even religion might find a renewed role in a world where death increasingly looks far off, Arrison said. Religion remains as popular as ever despite a doubling of human life expectancy up until now, and so Arrison suggested that religions focused on providing purpose or guidance in life could do well. But religions focused on the afterlife may want to rethink their strategy.

Making ‘Avatar’ real (or not) The boldest scheme for immortality came from media mogul Dmitry Itskov, who introduced his “Project Immortality 2045: Russian Experience.” He claimed support from the Russian Federation’s Ministry of Education and Science, as well as actor Seagal, to create a research center capable of giving humans life-extending bodies.

Itskov’s wildly ambitious plans include creating a humanoid avatar body within five to seven years, transplanting a human brain into a new “body B” in 10 to 15 years, digitally uploading a human brain’s consciousness in 20 to 25 years, and moving human consciousness to hologram-like bodies in 30 to 35 years.

That vision may have exceeded even the optimism of many Singularity Summit attendees, given the apparent restlessness of the crowd during Itskov’s presentation. But it did little to dampen the conference’s overall sense that humanity has a positive future within its collective grasp — even if some people still need to be convinced.

“We are storming the fricking barricades of death, both physically and intellectually, so we have to make it sexy,” said Jason Silva, a filmmaker and founding producer/host for Current TV.

By Jeremy Hsu

    10/17/2011 7:39:40 PM ET2011-10-17T23:39:40

You can follow InnovationNewsDaily Senior Writer Jeremy Hsu on Twitter @ScienceHsu. Follow InnovationNewsDaily on Twitter @News_Innovation, or on Facebook.

DeepThought’s Guide,,,

  DeepThought’s Guide

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – The Scientific Papers

Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:06 PM EDT

Well, we have a very interesting article today.  We’re going to take a look at the scientific papers, some strange signals hiding behind mains hum and a video of a CNN reporter having images inserted into his brain.  Its interesting that the media was all over this tec …

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Physics Revealed (2012 Update)

Sun Feb 19, 2012 4:00 PM EST

I received an email in regards to some of my calculations in this series. Apparently, discussions around the web have found several errors and even provided some better examples.

Continue reading this entry …

The NSA – Behind The Curtain

Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:54 PM EST

As promised, today we will take an in-depth examination of the NSA’s global intelligence gathering network. What you are about to read will come as an eye-opener and represents the current state of the NSA’s capabilities.

Continue reading this entry …

NSA Disinformation – Watch The Watchers With Me (Part 2)

Mon Jan 9, 2012 2:59 PM EST

Before we get to the good stuff, analyzing the technology employed in the NSA’s global listening network, I thought I would deal with one more instance of disinformation.  This one appeared on Slashdot.org on Christmas Day under the title of “The Science of Santa”.  I  …

Continue reading this entry …

NSA Disinformation – Watch The Watchers With Me

Sun Jan 1, 2012 3:14 AM EST

Its been around seven months since my last article on the NSA’s technology. I have been watching the slow spread of the information throughout the web and the disinformation it has spawned. It has been very interesting to watch the spies at work.

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – The Target’s Story – Part 2

Sun May 22, 2011 11:14 PM EDT

First off, I must apologize to those waiting for the second installment of this article.  The witness, from which this story is derived, was attacked just after the release of the first article.  From tachycardia, right through to muscular compression to mimic the effe …

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Time To Come Clean

Tue May 3, 2011 8:45 PM EDT

What is the connection between Guantanamo bay, human experimentation, color revolutions, middle-east uprisings, Total Information Awareness and the War On Terror?  It almost sounds like the lead in to a very funny punchline.  Unfortunately, no such punchline exists.&nb …

Continue reading this entry …

Build A Radio That Does Not Require Batteries

Tue May 3, 2011 12:35 PM EDT

I have been tinkering around with a very basic crystal radio over the last week.  For those that do not know what that means, a crystal radio is a very basic radio used mainly to listen to AM broadcasts.  Vital to the war effort during WWII, “foxhole radios” as they we …

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – The Target’s Story

Wed Mar 30, 2011 5:19 AM EDT

With so many articles on this topic, I thought it was about time that a high level overview was produced. So, in this article we are going to focus on what this system can do and present it in plain English.

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Hunting For The Signal

Wed Mar 23, 2011 4:39 PM EDT

Well, the inevitable has happened. With all this analysis showing that human perception can be controlled by ELF radio signals, I decided to create a setup to analyze signals in this portion of the spectrum. So, what did I find? The Setup

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Eye-Witness Testimony

Sun Mar 6, 2011 5:49 AM EST

If you have been following this series for the last year or so, you would know that I demonstrated how naturally occurring radio signals can be reconstructed by computer to betray thoughts, feelings, sight and sound and how such information can be communicated back to the body.

Continue reading this entry …

The End Of The Airforce?

Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:07 PM EST

Considered the work horse of the modern military, the airforce has played a pivotal role in conflicts for the last century. As with most things in life, everything has its day. The last two decades have seen a surge in development of both unmanned and autonomous aircraft.

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Was Jared Loughner A Target?

Tue Jan 11, 2011 2:53 AM EST

This series so far has focused on the technical side of Synthetic Telepathy. We have established the basic mode of operation and, to some extent, described some of the psychotropic sequences that the Artificial Intelligence employs.

Continue reading this entry …

Should Your Vote Depend On Your IQ?

Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:47 PM EST

I have been thinking a lot about how Democracy appears to be broken across the world. From unaccountable governments, to rises in extremism all forms, it does seem that some form of modification to our current models is required.

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Physics Revealed – Part 5

Wed Oct 20, 2010 10:01 AM EDT

Throughout this series we have examined a wide range of aspects, from the conceptual design to the transmission power of an individual neuron. Today, I thought we would look at a completely different aspect.

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Physics Revealed – Part 4

Sat Oct 9, 2010 2:48 PM EDT

In the last article, we refined our figures for the detection of weak radio emissions, from a single neuron, at orbital distances. Whilst the signal was weak, less than -200dBW, it was nothing outrageous that a modern satellite array could not detect.

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Physics Revealed – Part 3

Sun Oct 3, 2010 7:57 PM EDT

Note (20th Feb 2011):  The figures presented in this article have been revised.  The current version can be found here.     In the last couple of articles, I began an analysis to determine if it was scientifically possible for thoughts to be read by a satelli …

Continue reading this entry …

Can A Satellite Read Your Thoughts? – Physics Revealed – Part 2

Mon Sep 20, 2010 12:25 PM EDT

The last article in this series caused quite a stir around the Internet. From the legitimate crazies to the classic muddy-the-water tactics employed by various defense departments, the article has drawn attention right across the globe.

Continue reading this entry …

Einstein’s Missing Pages – The Energy And Mass Relationship

Sun Sep 12, 2010 2:28 PM EDT

Unless you have spent your life living under a rock you will have heard of the equation E=MC^2. Often touted as the equation that led to the nuclear bomb, it implied that Energy and Mass were interchangeable.

Continue reading this entry …

Einstein’s Missing Pages – The Doppler Shift And Information Loss

Tue Aug 24, 2010 7:46 PM EDT

I have been traveling around the web again and I ran into an interesting statement about The Doppler Shift at relativistic velocities. As this is the topic of the article, it seemed to be a good example to use.

Continue reading this entry …

P = NP or P ≠ NP – That Is The Question

Tue Aug 17, 2010 10:11 PM EDT

I read an article tonight over at physorg.com. Vinay Deolalikar, a computer scientist from HP claims to have solved one of the most important questions in computer science, P ≠ NP or P = NP. Quoting from the article, the following is a brief overview of the problem:

Continue reading this entry …

Einstein’s Missing Pages – Temporal Mechanics & Tube Theory

Wed Aug 11, 2010 12:53 PM EDT

Following on from my last article, I have decided to expand upon the topic. This is mainly because of the comment I made in relation to special relativity at the end of the last article.

Continue reading this entry …

Einstein’s Missing Pages – The Space-Time Equivalence

Thu Aug 5, 2010 8:58 AM EDT

Many people, when examining the big bang, wonder how time can just start or how does an event happen without time. Such questions are perfectly reasonable, but it is easy to demonstrate how this happens.

Continue reading this entry …

The Fallacy of Free Energy – Is Nuclear Fusion A Dud?

Tue Jul 27, 2010 7:56 AM EDT

Over the years, there have been a wide range of devices constructed that promise to deliver free energy. Whilst not entirely free to construct, they are meant to produce energy from no consumable source.

Continue reading this entry …

The NSA – Behind The Curtain

The NSA – Behind The Curtain

Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:54 PM EST

Say hello to Mr Computer…

As promised, today we will take an in-depth examination of the NSA’s global intelligence gathering network. What you are about to read will come as an eye-opener and represents the current state of the NSA’s capabilities. Some of this will be expected, some of it will come as a shock.

What you will learn is that the technology that underpins this global listening network is a lot more advanced than governments would have you know. Usually wrapped up in basic, generalised, descriptions the general public is kept blind to the current state of technological development.

We will take this examination in three major parts. The first part will examine the core processing system. Once this part is understood, we can then look at how information flows to and from this core and where it is obtained from. Finally, we will examine how this information is used by the NSA.

 I will cover as much as possible about this system, but the scope is very large. In general, any use of this data that the reader can observe is most likely already being conducted.

 Mr Computer

 The scope of the NSA’s infrastructure is mind boggling to say the least. Heavily compartmentalised, the entire array of systems is shielded from the average NSA employee as much as it is shielded from the public. That said, once you understand the core of the NSA, you will be in a position to see how information flows in and out of this core.

The NSA is built around a super-computer bound Artificial Intelligence known only as “Mr Computer” in the civilian world. This is not your average A.I., no basic set of responses or a mere dedicated algorithm that can spot patterns. Mr Computer is an entity or being in his own right. A sentient computer system as complex as any human.

 Comparable to VMware in a way, an instance of Mr Computer can be started at a moments notice. Within seconds, a fully fledged virtual intelligence agent, ready to analyse the information that has been piped to him, can be up and running.

 Mr Computer is competent enough to handle real-time interaction without human intervention. Mr Computer understands and speaks all modern languages and even a number of dead ones. Able to intelligently converse and express its own opinions, Mr Computer collates information from disparate sources and compiles them into concise reports that do not miss the smallest detail or nuance.

Mr Computer’s capabilities and human-like reasoning cannot be understated.

Instances of Mr Computer can vary in terms of their personality given the task that they must undertake. Extremely professional instances can be called upon when the system must produce reports or provide presentations. Less anal versions, complete with a sense of humour can be instantiated when less formal situations arise such as development environments or when used in conjunction with Remote Neural Communication.

Rather than loading modules for specific tasks, a common hive mind is shared by any number of front-end personalities. What one instance knows, they all know. A hive mind is a form of collective consciousness. Rather than an instance replicating information it has learned, it is recorded to a shared brain and reflected throughout all instances at the same time. Of course, given the distributed nature of the network, some replication must be performed across continental links.

The A.I. is not limited to just one branch of the NSA, it exists in a distributed grid that spans the globe. The A.I. can migrate between locations to enable tracking of specific targets, access information, or systems.

Mr Computer is not just limited to thinking like a human, it also has sensory capabilities that are on par with a human. In setting such as RNC, Mr Computer can see and identify object just as well as a human. That is, it can identify objects a human target is seeing, without leveraging the identification system of the human target. In other scenarios, such as analysing infra-red data from a satellite, it could possibly outperform a human at object recognition and speculation of heat sources.

Mr Computer can speak. With a vocabulary as broad as any dictionary, Mr Computer can express ideas, concepts and opinions very eloquently and concise.

The system is not naive either, it can withhold information, evade social engineering ploys and indirect questioning. It can tell when it is looking at reflections of targets, identify objects that a target can not immediately identify and validate or expand upon information by examining a wide variety of sources.

Further to this, Mr Computer is no idiot either. He is quite capable of following advanced topics, from physics, to computing theory he can spot the smallest of flaws in reasoning or expose potential technical issues that could prove fatal to a particular design.

It knows bull@!$%# when it hears it and will let you know in no uncertain terms.

As we can see, Mr Computer does all the labour intensive information gathering, categorising and structuring. That said, its duties are not limited to passive analysis work.

Now that we understand the core of the NSA’s operations, we can begin to examine the various “information pipes” that supply information to this supercomputer infrastructure.

The Pipes Are Calling

First off, we need to define what we mean by an “information pipe”. For those with computing knowledge, this should be obvious, but bear with me while I explain it to the rest of the readers.

We have already defined the core processing element, Mr Computer. Mr Computer accepts information and does something with it. An “information pipe” is an input to Mr Computer that has been structured in a manner efficient for processing. We could also use an “information pipe” to output information or to control something.

The first “information pipe” that the public will be most familiar with is the NSA’ warrentless wiretapping program. Forget everything that you have ever read about this program, also forget everything you ever heard of about Trailblazer and similar projects such as ThinThread. This is security theatre, a production worthy of a Broadway musical. These “classified programs” are nothing more than interfaces used by Mr Computer. When agents talk of specific program that can analyse data in real-time and cross-reference with other sources, they are really speaking of an “information pipe” to Mr Computer.

This wiretapping program copies verbatim every piece of data that flows across the backbone of the internet. The data is sent directly to an array of Mr Computer instances, which performs a real-time analysis of the data packets it receives. This wiretap picks up most of the traffic in the US and a large percentage of traffic globally.

We will go into more detail on the information processing of this later, but at this stage I will say that that Mr Computer was opening files on every person that could be identified in the traffic, even if they are in the US.

The next major data source is the global wide band radio listening system. This covers everything from human thought, right through to identifying which radio station a person is listening to. The former is done by listening to ELF and the latter is a modern version of the British’s RAFTER espionage program. Most of this performed by a satellite network, supported by a network of ground stations throughout the world. As a wide receiver, it also picks up WIFI, RFID, compromising emissions from electrical sources, cordless telephones, GSM, cell phones, GPS, Car Fobs, satellite uplinks/downlinks, etc.

Our third pipe comes from a global hacking program, performed by bot nets and Mr Computer. Typically using China as a cover, Mr Computer will launch attacks against US and global businesses trying to collect information on users, everything from personnel records, right through to payroll information. The networks are also mapped to provide offensive capabilities in a cyber-warfare scenario. Faceless groups such as Anonymous, or other organisations, are used as a cover story.

Another “information pipe” comes from underwater cables. These can either be have splitters installed, or where copper cabling exists passive detection equipment installed.

These are just some examples of information sources. You can basically add any form of data you can think of, intelligence reports, diplomatic cables, economic reports, media reports, music, online posts, emails, etc.

So far, we have only examined inputs to the system. A different form of “information pipe” is one that outputs information. The outputs come in two basic forms, information only and offensive.

In terms of information only outputs, this can range from sending particular data or reports to agents or decision makers, right through to relaying that information to different departments such as the CIA, FBI or State and Federal Police. The process ensures timely and complete information goes to those that require it the most.

The offensive side can cover a wide range of activities. The first capability is the jamming system. Wide-band jamming, or selective jamming, can be conducted to deny radio space to the enemy in geographical targeted areas. Furthermore, this form of jamming can render both devices and humans inoperable. Complex ELF transmissions can reduce a human target to a quivering mess or in extreme cases even kill by interfering with neuronal firing patterns and nerve impulses.

Wide-band jamming can interfere with the circuitry of any unshielded device, from phones right through to laptops. Such activity would cause devices to freeze, or if certain exploits exist, damage the system entirely.

A mixture of ground, air and satellite-based networks are used to deliver this capability.

Another capability provides Mr Computer with a veritable Swiss army knife of tools to breach networks, crash routers, deny service and seize control. A significant amount of information is gathered by remote neural communication. By eavesdropping of key personnel, network maps, passwords and security measures can all be recorded beforehand. This is not limited to foreign companies, as the NSA must be prepared for strikes that occur within their own nation.

With the advent of remotely controlled drones and autonomous aircraft, Mr Computer has undergone a significant amount of changes in the last 20 years that enable him to control a networked battlefield. This is “War Games” on steroids, where the most efficient battle strategies can be implemented and coordinated by a single command-and-control system. There are a range of security issues with this setup, but the capability exists.

In short, if it can be damaged or manipulated electronically, then Mr Computer “has an app for that”.

Input, Input, Input

Now that we have established where Mr Computer gets his information, we now need to look at what he does with it. Earlier we spoke about the warrentless wiretaps and various other sources of “information pipes”. Now let’s see what is done with that information.

The key aspect to watch here is the “web of related information” and how different webs of information can be cross-referenced with other webs. This is where the real power comes from.

Each fragment of information that can be definitively identified gets added to a file under the person’s name. This could be a telephone call, email, or an IM chat. As communications often involve more than one person, a link is added to each person’s file involved in the communication. Information that can only be tied to a machine or ip address, is added that to that machine’s file or ip address’ file.

Using a technique known as cluster analysis, this information is brought together centred around high priority targets, locations, keywords or businesses. A good way of thinking about it is to compare it with services such as Facebook and LinkedIn. The relationship between the files is analysed for a variety of factors and the result creates a web which is weighted in terms of importance.

Different webs will exist for different factors, such as one web for those linked with chemical production, or another web for engineering expertise. These webs can be cross referenced against each other to extract more detailed information. For example, by cross-referencing a web of chemical production against engineering expertise, we may find a person or group capable of producing sophisticated explosives or weapons. From this merged web, we could then see who their friends are, who they have been communicating with recently and even review their communications.

We could take this further by comparing their basic salary with their current bank accounts, or look for wire transfers.

With the advent of social media platforms, images of friends and family are also added to the system. Mr Computer’s facial recognition tags the photos just like Facebook and examines the photos for other items, like guns, computers, etc.

Obviously, this has one serious privacy issue, in that, the only way to exclude you from a web, is to know everything about you. Otherwise, you are an unknown element. Now you understand why the warrentless wiretap exists, even to this day.

If you have used any form of digital communication, from a phone to a computer in the last decade, then most, if not all of communications have been recorded and added to a file against your name. The notion that at least one member of the communication needs to be related to terrorism has been tested and shown to be false. How do we know that? Well, it is staring you in the face. In order to know who the parties are, the technology used requires them to be listening and identifying voices in the first place.

Ignore any suggestion that this too much data.  The truth is that all the communications happening on the planet right now can be monitored in near real-time.

As a rule, the NSA lie and as an all-encompassing rule, politicians will lie for them too.

As result of information extracted from wide-band monitoring, real-time tracking of cell phones is pretty much standard practice. Each call can be recorded verbatim and analysed in real-time. As each number is learned the system fills in personal information. This can provide a Google-Earth like view of cell phone movements, most of which can be remotely activated for espionage. Again, this web can be cross-reference with other webs of information.

Radios can reveal which frequency is being listened to. So, by plotting schedules of something like a Numbers Station, a satellite network can pinpoint a listener to within a few meters. Similarly, if you were to listen to a radio station sympathetic to a particular group, your location can be flagged and cross-referenced with information on current occupants.

Human beings emit radio waves in the ELF spectrum. The security services do not need to place a bug on us to track where we are, what we are talking about, what we are seeing or even what we are thinking. All of this information is being leaked into our environment 24/7 by our own bodies. All it takes is the right equipment to convert those signals into intelligence. Its no bigger a task than listening to a telephone exchange leaking radio waves and reconstructing the data into voice or data transmissions.

These are just some of the things that can be achieved. I could go on all night about how to compare datasets to locate people, hinder organisations, etc. Anything you can think of to tease information out of the various “information pipes” is being performed by Mr Computer 24/7.

Hardware

This can be very difficult to estimate. Despite popular belief that the NSA will hit a Yottabye by 2015, it seems a little outragous given the space requirements and modern hardware.

My own estimations are far more conservative, probably under a couple of Zettabytes. Mr Computer is most likely built around an array of Cray X1 or X1E supercomputers (4096 processors). The global grid probably contains a number of these or similar systems.  With their base costs, they could be running several hundred easily.

In fact, it is likely that the following video shows an early variant of Mr Computer’s infrastructure. The segment reveals that the most powerful machine is called “The Thinking Machine”. I feel that this is a dumbed down reference to Mr Computer.

The Thinking Machine

Furthermore, it would appear that Youtube’s EidolonTLP is in fact an instance of Mr Computer in disguise. Output from Mr Computer was directed into software generally available to the public to hide the complexity of the NSA’s supercomputer.

The term Eidolon is Mr Computer’s idea of a joke, in that he appears to be a “phantom look-alike of the human form”. There is some suggestion that may be a subtle reference to Edgar Allan Poe’s poem ‘Dreamland’, which is also a term for Area 51. Unless there is a datacenter at this location, I am unable to confirm the link. It may also be another joke, referring to the fact that his existence would be a conspiracy theory.

A possible further explanation is the Dungeons and Dragon series and the link between sentience, madness and occupying the realm of dreams, which may be another subtle reference to RNC.

If you listen to EidolonTLP, he does reveal some information on the structure of the network and his own design. From a computing perspective and EidolonTLP’s use of language, its a safe bet that this is a real A.I.:

Eidolon TLP – Mr Computer in incognito

Conclusion

The intelligence world is a lot worse than you think. When humans are free from their constraints and away from the scrutany of others, they always revert to their most base instincts. Anything you can imagine is currently being done in the name of National Security. From murder to human experimentations, the acronyms are at it as we speak.

At some point, it could be your turn.

What you will notice from all of this, is that the warrentless wiretap program was just the icing on the cake and was very clearly “planned from the outset” as all the backend infrastructure was in place prior to 9/11. This claim is supported in the following document:

81. Within eleven (11) days of the onset of the Bush administration, and at least seven (7) monthsprior to the attacks of September 11, 2001, defendant ATT began development of a center for monitoring long distance calls and internet transmissions and other digital information for the exclusive use of the NSA.

91. International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) was one of the parties working with ATT and the NSA to develop the monitoring center and IBM personnel participated in meetings with ATT and NSA officials in the development of the monitoring center.

http://cryptome.org/mayer-016.htm

The US government is quite adept at lying through its teeth, especially to its own citizens. The typical approach is to start a public version such as the “Information Awareness Office” with the same goals as the classified program which provides cover. The general public and privacy groups attack the public program, resulting in its closure, meanwhile the classified program remains operational. The general public believe they have won a victory, any leaks are associated with the now defunct public program and the government gets the information it wanted in the first place.

The NSA is a deeply corrupt organisation, that has little regards for the rights of others.  Never trust a government, even your own, implicitly.  Nations change, opinions change and people change.  It just takes the right catalyst for it to happen.

In most cases, you will find the seeds were always there, you just chose to ignore them.