The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science Is Changing Our World [NOOK Book]


History has already progressed through an agricultural revolution, an industrial revolution, and an information revolution. The Neuro Revolution foretells a fast approaching fourth epoch, one that will radically transform how we all work, live and play.

Neurotechnology—brain imaging and other new tools for both understanding and influencing our brains—is accelerating the pace of change almost everywhere, from financial markets to law ...

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The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science Is Changing Our World

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History has already progressed through an agricultural revolution, an industrial revolution, and an information revolution. The Neuro Revolution foretells a fast approaching fourth epoch, one that will radically transform how we all work, live and play.

Neurotechnology—brain imaging and other new tools for both understanding and influencing our brains—is accelerating the pace of change almost everywhere, from financial markets to law enforcement to politics to advertising and marketing, artistic expression, warfare, and even religious belief.

The Neuro Revolution introduces you to the brilliant people leading this worldwide transformation, taking you into their laboratories, boardrooms and courtrooms for a unique, insider’s glimpse into the startling future now appearing at our doorstep. From foolproof lie detectors to sure-fire investment strategies to super-enhanced religious and aesthetic experiences, the insights and revelations within The Neuro Revolution will foster wonder, debate, and in some cases consternation. Above all, though, they need to be understood by those who will be most affected—all of us.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Neuroscience entrepreneur Laursen, founder of a global trade association and a market research firm, is a futurologist with his feet on the ground. After an eight-year struggle to diagnose a painful back injury, Lynch's condition was pinpointed by a full-body MRI scan; the experience convinced him that emerging tools will improve our "control over the mental environment" in the same way we've managed the physical environment. Examining emerging tech, Lynch reports on lie detectors like a portable system for rapidly scanning and detecting involuntary facial tics, and a developing method called "brain fingerprinting." Emerging marketing techniques include functional MRI scanners for focus groups, allowing researchers to look directly at the brain of the subject, rather than depend on verbal responses. Lynch predicts that brain scan information will improve performance, and may become vital to professionals like stock brokers and specialized military forces; he also sees mental face-lifts attaining the popularity of cosmetic surgery. The exciting news is tampered by warnings that such devices could also be used for "cultural or economic bondage." Lynch is passionate, knowledgeable and fully engaged with the world of neurotechnology, and his overview makes absorbing material.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
From the Publisher
“In The Neuro Revolution, Zack Lynch takes you on an exciting and often unsettling tour of the frontier of neuroscience. Brace for impact; the future is much closer than you think.”

— Jane Pauley, former co-host of NBC's Dateline and Today Show and author of Skywriting: A Life Out of the Blue

"Zack Lynch's Neuro Revolution is a fascinating, informative and astounding forecast of how neurotechnology will shape every aspect of our future. If you want to know what the next big thing is and how it will transform your life, work and world, read this book.”—Dr. James Canton, CEO & Chairman, Institute for Global Futures

“When I started reading this book, I thought Lynch's observations were rather hyperbolic. By the time I finished the book, I was stunned to realize that his points are not only rational but of urgent importance. Avoid reading this book at your peril.” — Vint Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist, Google Inc., also known as the "Father of the Internet"

“A book of remarkable scope and synthesis, Zack Lynch's perspective on the revolutionary changes that neuroscience will bring to art, entertainment, finance, religion, warfare and the law is unmatched. There is nothing like a radically new view on where humanity is headed at a time when so much is in question.”— Steve Jurvetson, Managing Director, Draper Fisher Jurvetson

“We’re on the threshold of understanding how the human brain works. These discoveries will allow us to dramatically improve every aspect in human life from curing mental illness and brain disease to helping humans learn more quickly and communicate more effectively. The Neuro Revolution insightfully forecasts the enormous consequences of these breakthroughs.”—Patrick J. McGovern, Founder and Chairman of International Data Group, and Board Chairman of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research

"A remarkably accessible and engaging guide to the neurosociety to come."—Jonathan Moreno, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress, and author of Mind Wars

“The Neuro Revolution is a guide into a land both mysterious and familiar: our own minds. Zack Lynch describes the technology and discoveries that are illuminating this neural territory, and rightly points out that delving into the secrets of the brain can be both enlightening and frightening.”

—David Ewing Duncan, author of Experimental Man, and Chief Correspondent for NPR’s “Biotech Nation”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429988230
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 7/21/2009
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 308 KB

Meet the Author

ZACK LYNCH is the founder and executive director of the Neurotechnology Industry Organization (NIO), a global trade association for companies involved in neuroscience, brain research institutes and patient advocacy groups. He is also the co-founder of NeuroInsights, the world’s leading market research firm covering the neurotechnology industry.

BYRON LAURSEN, bestselling co-author of ShowTime and The Winner Within with NBA legend Pat Riley, joined forces with Zack Lynch to help gather the advanced thoughts, amazing stories and stunning predictions from brilliant minds that you will encounter within The Neuro Revolution.

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Read an Excerpt

One Time’S Telescope

As I rolled into that narrow MRI tunnel in San Francisco, my body tightly surrounded by what was then the very newest scanning technology, I was like a caterpillar entering a chrysalis. My hope was to emerge eventually into a better existence, my chronic pain erased. That hope was fulfilled, something I’m still thankful for every day. But an even greater transformation was launched for me that day. I gradually came to see possibilities far greater than the positive impact of this superior imaging technology on medicine and surgery.

It was about recognizing a gargantuan historic inevitability: Vast changes are gathering from this new technology, propelling humanity toward a radical reshaping of our lives, families, societies, cultures, governments, economies, art, leisure, religion—absolutely everything that’s pivotal to humankind’s existence.

This gigantic wave of transformation will reach every corner of the planet. It will create a metamorphosis as complete as the changing of a larval worm into a butterfly.

If enough of us realize what is coming, and if we can infuse this emerging wave with practical and benevolent intelligence, continuously keeping our aspirations aimed high, it will let us create a future of greatly enhanced, better-balanced, and more satisfying individual lives within a vastly transformed society that we will build through an unimaginably powerful capability we’ve never had before: increasingly precise control over the most complex entity in the universe, the single most important determinant of the quality of the lives we lead—our human minds.

Scientists are now building a phenomenal body of knowledge, at an explosive rate, about how our brains respond the way they do, and why, and how we might leverage this accumulating knowledge into innovations that will impact every part of our lives. Better understanding our brains will lead to more solid and reliable decisions, as individuals and as nations, creating more lasting happiness. We will tap potentials humanity has dreamed of and reached for across aeons—to live comfortably, harmoniously, and prosperously with our physical environment, each other, and our own emotions. Literally knowing our own minds will create new ways of learning, working, distributing wealth, experiencing cultures, and being creative. We will be able to ease chronic pain on every level, from physical to spiritual. Life in this now-emerging neurosociety will be as advanced from current existence as the Renaissance was from the Stone Age. We will see enormous modification of our personal relationships, the bases of political power, expressions of art, religious experiences, modes of learning, physical and mental health, and business competitiveness.

Profound questions will arise all along the way, and major controversies will mount, as these personal and social transformations challenge deeply held beliefs about what it means to be human.

You may already have learned some aspects of neurotechnology and neuroscience from recent magazine and newspaper articles that have described how researchers now can see the workings of the human brain in real time. Most of these early stories are centered on medical possibilities. Medicine is both vital and fascinating, but it’s really just one facet of the world’s approaching transformation. Neuroscience now drives many fields of study. University department walls are shape-shifting as many brand-new combinations are being created outright, at a rapid pace. Neurotheology, neurolaw, neuromarketing, neuroesthetics, and neurofinance are among the examples. These developments are morphing so quickly that even the most brilliant scientific minds at work today are often just vaguely aware of the neuroscience-propelled changes revolutionizing areas beyond their own fields of expertise.

The popular press reports on neuroscience that you may already have seen are your proof that the neurosociety has already taken baby steps. In the pages to come you’ll find proof that the time is coming remarkably near for neuroscience to begin taking long, broad strides, and to become as unmistakable on our horizon of time as history’s other great transformations did in their time.

I’ve spent the last several years positioned in full view of the coming attractions now being projected by some of the world’s most brilliant minds. My job is to relentlessly track neuroscientific projects under way within the many businesses, universities, and independent labs now pursuing breakthroughs. My mission is to synthesize all the information that’s flowing, shaping it into the best-informed ideas possible about where the rubber is going to meet the road.

The forthcoming chapters will reveal vital pieces of what I have seen from this unique vantage point, and your own visions of our possible tomorrows will take shape.

Change brings tumult, and inevitably it also inspires fear. The challenges ahead are tremendous. Deep social and cultural conflicts will arise, terrifying consequences may erupt, even as incredible benefits come about.

During the onrush of this neuroscience wave, it may seem at times—just as it often does today—that we are headed for a catastrophic future. Why shouldn’t reasonable people be afraid of the future? Hellhounds are on our trail right now. Our news is a parade of horrific imagery: terrorists in continual and bloody resurgence; global climatic shifts; food shortages across the globe; the evaporation of the middle class; startling increases in suicide; radically volatile energy prices; human and financial assets hemorrhaging in wars being waged across the planet; currencies tanking; babies born daily into desperate poverty; visions taking shape of an unstable multipolar world. This hydra-headed malaise makes today’s widespread prophecies of massive die-offs and possible extinction feel all too believable.

But thanks to the curiosity and drive of our ancestors, and to billions of us who will be working together in the near future within the neurosociety, we will be able to build a bridge wide enough for all of us to survive. We will also have the means to go higher than just survival. Depending on how we deal with the tumult, we will enter a flourishing age, riding a wave characterized by nearly unlimited access to the aspects of our humanity Abraham Lincoln summed up as "the better angels of our nature."

Since the dawn of civilization, humanity has undergone three societal revolutions. Each was driven forward by newly invented tools. Each of these technological leaps let people control the world around them to a far greater degree than was previously imaginable. Those surges of expanded control created three new epochs for humankind.

You are about to begin understanding the fourth.

Nearly ten thousand years ago, agricultural society came into being. Plows pulled by oxen replaced human muscles as the primary energy source for food production. Our ancestors were no longer forced to continually hunt, gather, and migrate. They began to gather surpluses. Sparse settlements grew into cities and city-states of hundreds of thousands of people. Specialized occupations were born, and the complexity of human life increased enormously.

Less than two and a half centuries ago, steam-powered engines became a reality, ushering in industrial society. Our control over energy creation, goods production, and resource distribution multiplied many fold. Distance became easier to conquer. New markets opened up around the world. The interconnectedness of human life was again magnified to a far higher degree.

In our time, the microchip gave birth to today’s information society. We can tap into instantaneous global knowledge exchange. This accelerated communication and expanded access has created, in turn, vast new efficiencies across every existing industry, and the birth of industries and occupations that never existed before. The complexity and interconnectedness of all our lives has reached a staggering new level in a very short time.

These new technologies not only brought us new industries; they also reshaped business competition, personal communication, artistic expression, and warfare, bringing on such wide-ranging transformations that the lives of future generations were completely and forever changed.

Today we sit on the cusp of another overwhelming societal transformation, beginning to feel the liftoff of a wave potentially more dramatic than any of the three that came before. It is the emerging neurosociety. Early evidence of this wave will meet your eyes in the pages ahead. You will gradually realize that this coming wave will give us undreamed-of control of two vast spheres of life: both the world around us and the universe within us.

The forces driving the neurosociety’s emergence are clear. Its arrival is both inevitable and already in progress. Even those who are now positioned closest to the unfolding wave cannot fully imagine the range and scope of impact on its way. It will be nothing less than the birth a new civilization.

Here is what I mean by inevitable: Global population has soared more than twentyfold over the past two hundred years, reaching over 6.6 billion. During the same two centuries, average life spans more than doubled, vaulting to more than seventy years. Current population projections say that the United States in 2040 will have 54 million people aged eighty-five and older, up from 4.2 million today. Today, those over eighty-five represent only 2 percent of the population. By 2040 they may represent almost 20 percent.

A population that is significantly older and massively larger, coupled with the recently created extensive global connectedness, has already created opportunities along with brand-new problems for modern humans. At the same time, it has intensified many of the old ones. We navigate our ever-changing lives with brains that have evolved very little since the Paleolithic Age. The problem-solving machinery in our heads is astonishingly complex, yet overwhelmed and overstimulated on a daily basis. It can turn quickly and insidiously, without our realizing it, into problem-causing machinery. We are constantly blasted with images of unattainable lifestyles, creating daily identity crises as we search for meaning in a world of continually shifting truths. Many of us are appalled by today’s uneven distribution of wealth and power. Others are well supplied with both wealth and power yet are disillusioned, not able to feel the happiness such assets were supposed to provide. On every continent, in every culture, we see uncertainty, depression, anger, and resentment surfacing on a vast scale.

However, after spending thousands of years improving our control over the physical environment, we are about to receive new tools that will improve our control over the mental environment. These tools are a logical next step for helping conquer the stresses arising from living in our highly connected, urbanized information society.

Building on advances in brain science, neurotechnology (the set of tools for understanding and influencing the human brain) will allow us to experience life in ways never attainable before. Neurotechnology will enable people to consciously improve their emotional stability, enhance their cognitive clarity, and extend their most satisfying sensory experiences.

The Neuro Revolution will bring much more than fantastic new tools to enable individuals to experience a life less constrained by their evolutionarily influenced brain chemistry. It will deliver the capacity to reshape the very fabric, the innermost essential workings, of every industry, organization, and political system.

Let me share with you a vision of what is to come.

Using the last 250 years of history as our guide, we can use Time’s Telescope to project forward over the next half century and see how businesses, governments, and personal relationships will shape and be shaped by humanity’s fourth epochal transformation.

I developed Time’s Telescope as a conceptual framework for looking at humanity’s developments that is more refined than broadly descriptive epochs. It organizes recent human history into a succession of technological waves that build on the ones that came before them. I’ll explain the model a little more thoroughly below, but I believe it gives us a reliable way to venture into long-term social forecasting. By forecasting I mean seeing what are the compelling forces at work, and what patterns they will follow as our future unfolds. Forecasting does not mean making highly specific predictions of finite events. It means mapping the direction and force of the coming wave in light of patterns that have occurred during previous periods of change.

There are good reasons for not making highly specific statements about what is to come. I believe in learning from history. History has shown that even the best-informed people are often terrible at predicting the future.

For example, in 1895 the eminent Irish physicist Lord Kelvin declared that heavier-than-air flying machines were "scientifically impossible." Five years later, the Wright brothers launched their test flights over the windy beaches of Kitty Hawk. Thomas Edison declared in 1880 that the phonograph he had invented had "no commercial value." I recently watched Herbie Hancock receive his Grammy for album of the year with River: The Joni Letters, so I’d have to join the millions who respectfully disagree with the Wizard of Menlo Park (the nickname Edison won for his frequent displays of genius). In 1955, a prominent home appliance manufacturer’s CEO predicted that nuclear-powered vacuum cleaners would become a reality by 1965. Clearly, we are all happy that the atomic house cleaning revolution never took hold. In 1962, a Decca Recording Company executive turned down a young hopeful band by saying, "We don’t like their sound. Groups of guitars are on the way out." So four rather scruffy guys from Liverpool, collectively known as the Beatles, had to keep knocking on doors. Then they blew the roof off of pop culture and the music business worldwide. Early in the 1970s, experts told us that Japan’s electronics industry would soon reach a dead end because the market for stereos and transistor radios was nearly saturated. Examples like this are littered throughout the history of the future-predicting business. Given the now-obvious bonehead errors of these previous projections, where should we look for a fairly clear understanding of where society is headed in the future?

My training is to look at history. Of course, most of us know Napoleon’s famous comment that history is just "the lies agreed upon by the winners," and we also realize that there are ways a person can divide up history to support almost any argument. Time’s Telescope is just one of many ways of viewing history, but the perspective it provides is compelling.

Looking back over the 250 years that have passed since the first spark of the Industrial Revolution, we can see that newly developed technologies have provided the cutting edge of societal transformation in a relatively consistent pattern of sixty-year waves of economic and political change. Each time, with each new wave, a new set of technologies has emerged to solve problems we previously believed were insurmountable.

Each of these five waves became driven by the development and widespread use of a few new low-cost products that allowed entirely new industries to be born and at the same time transformed old industries, creating new forms of social organization along the way.

When we trace the role of these critical technologies across the span of each wave, we can see a predictable pattern of change. These historical patterns have been extensively researched by great thinkers such as Nikolai Kondratieff, Brian Arthur, Christopher Freeman, and Carlota Perez. I believe the Neuro Revolution will evolve along the lines that these proven patterns illuminate. Here is why Time’s Telescope gives us a solid foundation for the vital yet always risky enterprise of looking to the future.

The first wave, water mechanization, took place between 1770 and 1830. It gave us a huge jump in productivity and power by replacing handcrafted production with water-powered machinery. This first wave brought inexpensive cotton clothing and food to the masses.

The second wave, steam mechanization, began around 1820 and continued to about 1880. The machinery developed by the end of the first wave made inexpensive iron possible, leading to the massive build-out of iron railroads. Railroads accelerated our ability to get goods and services to distant markets.

The third wave, electrification, began in 1870 and continued to 1930 and made the production of steel far less expensive. Access to this superior metal transformed the railroad systems again, and also made the modern city possible. Steel, combined with the then-new electricity infrastructure, made skyscrapers, electric elevators, lightbulbs, telephones, and subways possible.

The fourth wave, motorization, arrived in 1910 and continued up to about 1970. Cheap oil ushered in mass assembly and the motorization of the industrial economy. Inexpensive transportation of goods and services was suddenly available to the masses. Cars, sometimes decried in their first years on the scene as "rolling bedrooms," changed nearly all aspects of our economic and social lives, leading to the build-out in the 1950s and beyond of extensive interstate highways and burgeoning suburbs.

The fifth wave, the information wave, began emerging around 1960. At first computers were limited to a small set of users, mainly universities, corporations, government, and the military. But gradually computers became smaller, more efficient, and more affordable. Individuals figured out some good reasons to bring them into their homes. The more they did so, the more momentum the information wave accumulated. Entrepreneurs and inventors pressed ahead to find the "killer applications," the products and services that would capitalize on the tremendous potential of the wave.

Futurists were already foreseeing and describing what they called the "information society" in the 1950s, but it took the actual economic expansion and social change that high technology delivered throughout the 1980s and 1990s to truly make it happen. Our lifetimes have been a window on tremendous geopolitical, economic, and social change. In less than fifty years information technologies have reshaped our world, making possible such radical developments as the fall of the Soviet Union, the rise of the Asian economies, the advent of real-time global capital networks, and the emergence of human-based asymmetrical warfare, wherein cell phones, garage door openers, and cheap riggings of ammunition—in the hands of people conspicuously willing to die—have played hell with the most expensively equipped, technologically advanced military force in world history.

Each wave consists of four roughly fifteen-year periods, each of which begins with a technological irruption phase characterized by explosive innovation where whole new types of technologies emerge. This is quickly followed by a period of financial frenzy over the profit-making potential of these new technologies and the many industries they will spawn and reshape. A cursory look at previous waves shows that financial bubbles are common during this phase. Next, during the build-out phase, products expand to their market potential while profit margins decline substantially, leading to mass commoditization. Ultimately, growth slows, which leads to the irruption phase of the next set of world-changing technologies as investors seek new high-value-creating, high-profit-margin sectors to place their bets. We are currently nearing the end of the build-out phase of the information wave. It’s far from being a spent force, but computerization has become so cheap and penetrated so deeply into our lives that it is becoming, in a sense, invisible.

These first five waves arrived in sixty-year cycles with decade-long overlaps at the beginning and end of each wave. As each advance rose, it built bigger and spread wider. It created fertile conditions that eventually germinated another advanced wave.

In the chapters ahead are some exquisite first signs of the sixth wave that is currently emerging. As a preview, I’d like to jump you ahead in time and share a few snapshots of the future in progress.

Advancing neuroscience has already begun to shake up our legal systems. The accuracy of brain scanning technologies for truth detection will soon eclipse existing polygraph "lie detector" tests, achieving accuracy rates of 90 or even 95 percent, good enough evidence to present in the Supreme Court. Mind reading will remain impossible, but systems that leverage brain imaging and verifiable emotion-sensing technologies to detect deception will be used during depositions, and will tilt the scale toward truth and justice. Unfortunately, in countries without protections of individual liberties, there is no telling how these technologies will be warped to solidify a monopoly on power.

Beyond these direct impacts, neuroscience may help us have a smoother path in the future, and truer justice, by enabling us to address crime’s root causes. Neuroscience will help us find core truths about vitally important questions such as: Why does someone turn out to be a violent criminal? Is there a biological basis? The answer is yes, which leads me to believe that people will be sentenced with mind-altering drugs as an alternative to prison.

In previous waves, finance was one of the first industries to adapt to the new possibilities. The same thing will happen in the neurotechnology wave. Think of the billions of dollars that are on the line each moment in our tightly linked worldwide markets. The economic drivers for improved trading performance and greater accuracy in every financial decision are tremendous. Early neuroscientific findings have already shattered the economic dogma that people are rational economic actors. For example, recent research shows that we almost always overestimate the happiness that an event, like a purchase, will bring. We might believe a new BMW will make life much better, but no matter how great the car is, the reality of having it will be less exciting than we anticipated, and the excitement will fade quicker than we imagined. There will be multiple ways that conventional economic theory will be transformed by brain science. Beyond that, new tools will emerge to help financial professionals excel. Neurotech-enabled traders will have at least two new technologies at their disposal. One will be real-time brain scanning and neurofeedback software solutions that correlate previous brain states and trading successes to give traders a predictive capacity, based upon their continuously shifting neurobiology, of their potential in any given moment for scoring a new success. Another set of tools they’re likely to use will be side-effect-free emotional stabilizers to maintain a calm state while executing high-stress, complex financial transactions.

Pushing further into the future, beyond what many today would consider to be reasonable, I expect the emergence of brain-computer interface systems that will expand an individual’s capacity to parse data streams and accelerate profitable decision making. These new technologies will create a new playing field for those who have access to them. Authentic breakthroughs like these will alter cost structures and transform productivity across the global financial industry as well as many other competitive knowledge-based industries. Neurotechnology will radically transform the prevailing view of managerial common sense for how to achieve highest productivity and profitability.

Artistic expression and the entertainment industries will be altered just as amazingly during the Neuro Revolution. Electricity gave rise to the cinema, and information technology created video games. Neurotechnology will engender new forms of artistic development and appreciation. For example, virtual reality experiences, which are still in their infancy, will flourish to an incredible degree. They will include not only visionary landscapes and sound tracks to tantalize the senses, but emotion-sensing technologies that will adapt the entertainment experience to match the desires of the person having them. In another form of neurotech-driven convergence art, deeper knowledge about why we find certain depictions scary or funny will lead to the development of systems that are worn throughout a performance or VR game. These systems will magnify, through noninvasive magnetic stimulation across the scalp, specific emotional states. It will be fascinating to see how creative humans across the globe leverage these new emotion-provoking tools to fulfill our desires for new experiences.

Brain science is also elucidating the relationships between religion and the human mind. Some neurotheologists expect eventually to prove scientifically the existence of God. Others expect that they will give atheism full scientific legitimacy. Even if that monumental question is never answered, though, it is reasonable to assume that uncovering the neurobiological underpinnings of spiritual belief and experiences will give us provocative new answers and insights into realms that have always seemed beyond humanity’s understanding. This new knowledge will shake the bedrock upon which many of today’s world religions are built. It is already known that surgical implants for epilepsy, electrodes placed in a deep brain region called the angular gyrus, can spark out-of-body experiences. The Neuro Revolution will also produce noninvasive technologies that will be able to stimulate spiritual experiences at a distance, giving new meaning to "inspiring sermon." Advancing neurotheology may eventually help people who haven’t devoted years of their life to meditation and prayer to achieve mystical and tranquil states. Beyond the mystical experiences themselves, there would be significant and possibly lasting aftereffects such as release from depression, better immune function, increased interconnectedness, and a more positive outlook on life.

Moving from the devotional to the destructive, the development of sophisticated neuroweapons is going to create a perpetual state of tension between promise and peril. In the development of neurowarfare, we will experience vast amounts of worry, debate, and conjecture over what the ultimate effects will be. Emotional detection systems will pervade public areas as global surveillance networks seek out terrorists and criminals. Enhancement of strength, stamina, and cognition for "warrior-athletes" of the future will represent the next form of combat readiness. These future warriors will be screened for performance potential and improved with next-generation enhancers that will make steroids and other controversial enhancers of today seem like St. Joseph’s Aspirin for Children. And they will be armed, for example, with technologies to mute a person’s memories.

New neuroweapon systems will be created quickly when neurotechnology becomes widespread as global demand for sophisticated neurotech-enabled entertainment systems and financial trading platforms drives rapid neurotech development.

Of course, some of these developments may not happen exactly as I describe. At this stage of the Neuro Revolution’s emergence, it is not crucial that the exact details are predicted correctly, but rather that we are right about the expansive breadth of change coming into our lives within each of these vital areas.

As a launching point, an excellent first place for seeing how brain science is already reshaping our world is in the realm of free will and the criminal justice system. Did your brain make you do it?

Copyright 2009 by Zack Lynch.
Published in July 2009 by St. Martin’s Press.
All rights reserved. This work is protected under copyright laws and reproduction is strictly prohibited. Permission to reproduce the material in any manner or medium must be secured from the Publisher.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Into a Narrow Tunnel 1

1 Time's Telescope 7

2 The Witness on Your Shoulders 19

3 Marketing to the Mind 47

4 Finance with Feelings 74

5 Trust 97

6 Do You See What I Hear" 114

7 Where Is God" 133

8 Fighting Neurowarfare 153

9 Perception Shift 181

10 Our Emerging Neurosociety 202

Epilogue 211

Acknowledgments 223

Notes 225

Bibliography 229

Index 239

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2009

    Wild Speculation

    Going into this book with the best intentions (even being pretty turned off by the cover which made me think of some religious self-discovery brochure)..I could not help but be disappointed with the author's wild claims, baseless logic leaps, and shameless self promotion. I literally had to force myself to finish the book hoping for some stunning insight or conclusion which never came.

    Mr. Lynch takes huge and un-substanciated leaps in extrapolating how neuroscience will be used in the future..I'm thinking his "Time Telescope" (a ridiculous and laboriously explained metaphor for the word "extrapolate") has a cracked lens!! The largest flaw in this book is the underlying implication that neuroscience will fix all our "human flaws" telling us right from wrong and ensuring good decision the point of avoiding personal or societal mistakes on the level of the current recession. What he apparently fails to realize, is that neuroscience will never tell us right from wrong or what the best decision is...because at it's best, all neuroscience can do is tell us what we're already thinking. Bad or flawed information, changing future conditions, and malicious intent by others will always lead to (what in hindsight) will be bad decisions no matter how clearly we know our own mind. Mr. Lynch spends much of the book talking about neuroscience (and his own random life experiences) as if it were a magical cure-all to everything that ails society.

    Mr. Lynch definitely has the blinders on.... and for obvious reasons. As a "economic and social forecaster" ... his own success is dependent on the realization of the future he predicts.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted April 18, 2011

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    Posted January 28, 2010

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