Status Update: Facebook is working hard on mind reading tech, but you already knew that…
Prepare to become part of Faceborg as telepathy and technology merge
Mark Zuckerberg has officially confirmed what he's only hinted at in the past: that Facebook wants to read your mind. Oh, also that it will get what it wants. Eventually.
The father of social media (one of many digital dads and media moms) and his team are steadfastly working on tech that'll inevitably allow people to upload their very thoughts and feelings to Facebook through "direct brain interfaces". Aside from making the average human uncomfortable, the announcement brings up a lot of questions. Questions like: Will you be able to LIKE a post when you actually HATE it? Will my best friend's ex girlfriend's new boyfriend know when I'm creeping his "Sick Canoe Trip 2015" photo album at 3am? Will privacy settings allow me to keep my synapses to myself or will Faceborg pilfer all my darkest thoughts and happiest memories and share them (Marc, one year ago today you thought Shannon was a real b*tch)? Will this mean a rebrand to Mindbook?
At Facebook's recent annual developer conference, F8 (yes, read "FATE" as in, ours is sealed), Zuckerberg revealed a gamut of augmented reality (AR) tech that let users superimpose digital objects on the real world using their smartphone cams. Just like PokémonGo, which makes you healthier by the way, but is frankly nothing new.
Aware that AR is already old hat, Zuckerberg was sure to tack on that they were now looking beyond augmented reality to other technologies. "We're building further out beyond augmented reality, and that includes work around direct brain interfaces that are going to eventually one day let you communicate using only your mind". He also admitted that "that stuff is really far out" but promised to reveal more later Wednesday. Telepathically. Just kidding, for now.
Regina Dugan, who heads up a closely guarded division of Facebook called Building 8 (equal parts awesome and creepy), will be speaking Wednesday evening, presumably with more mind meld info. Her team posted job openings for PhD-level "brain-computer interface engineers" and "neural-imaging engineers" earlier this year. Must excel at multitasking, managing tight deadlines, have a working knowledge of MIND CONTROL *robot voice*, and be a team player. Zuckerberg has talked about telepathy as the "ultimate communication technology" and a means to harness emotion "in its ideal and perfect form in your head and be able to share it with the world". My god. Bye bye safe space. Bye bye.
He's said the applications down the line will be immediate communion. "You'll just be able to think of something and your friends will immediately be able to experience it too". Send angry mind text: Brian! Stop thinking about hawaiian pizza! I'm in a meeting and you're grossing me out!
Zuckerberg's technology aims to seek out and process brainwaves to share them telepathically with everyone you went to elementary school with (and that guy you met at Liz's kid's bat mitzfah) is the"communication and computing platform of the future".
So, I guess we should get on board and think happy thoughts about telepathic tech and each other. Or Facebook will know.
Marc Beaulieu is a writer, producer and host of the live Q&A show guyQ LIVE @AskMen