Simulation to unlock the secrets of your mind

Soon, not even your innermost thoughts and secrets will be safe from being exploited by supercomputer technology. The Sandia National Laboratories in the USA is now researching how computer models can simulate the way in which you think and act.

The work will primarily be used for military purposes, to understand the minds of the US’s enemies. ‘We are engaged in a human war that is influenced primarily by individual human beings rather than technology or bureaucracy,’ says Russ Skocypec, senior manager of Sandia’s Human, Systems, and Simulation Technologies Department.

Sandia has been investigating the idea since spring 2006. It has now developed Cognitive Science and Technology Plan, which currently has three technical objectives – to provide a basic science understanding of the human brain, mind, and behaviour; to improve human performance; and to advance human-machine systems at all scales.

‘The plan is at the level of “send a man to the moon” – beyond the scope of what any one institution can possibly do,’ said Chris Forsythe, a member of the research team. ‘It’s a synthesis of ideas. Now, our intent is to home in on a few areas in which the labs can make a unique and profound contribution.’

The research will make use of Sandia’s expertise in high performance computing, nanotechnology, and physics-based modelling and simulation.

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