Pesco on how neurotech will transform how we work

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The goal, she explains, would be to develop a “quantified environment”
that you could precisely tune to different types of working modes.

Too bad that you’re not authorized to intercept by brainwaves, eh “boss”?


I hope this is successful as the 90’s prediction about Virtual Reality tech changing the way we work.


Not neurotic Joe Pesci then.

Hey, more basic things like make the aircon and servers quieter. The toilets less toxic. Stop that guy farting so much. That girl over there? Get her to change her stupid ringtone.

Then we can talking about the optimum oxygen percentage.


2 Hours W.O.O.

Sweet! We’re all gonna have jetpacks and flying cars, and they’re going to be invented tomorrow, probably. But here’s something that makes me a little nervous:

High stress situation? The majority of the data on the pilot’s heads-up display fades away, leaving only the most crucial information displayed.

I don’t suppose it’s possible for Colossus to guess wrong, and fade out the very information the pilot needs most?


There might well be some interesting room for failure at the edge cases(though probably not in avionics, because you actually have to undergo testing and certification and so on when you poke things, which encourages a relatively conservative approach to development); but I’d wager that the majority of the fun will be the banal but widely distributed kind.

The thesis appears to be that, with measurement of brain activity, we can extend scientific management further into the target’s head and further into jobs that don’t involve enough manual labor for time and motion study. That probably isn’t false; but people don’t use the term ‘Taylorism’ in an entirely friendly tone of glowing job satisfaction for a variety of good reasons. Something like stress measurement could be used for UI pruning; but it will likely be an even better fit to see who clearly needs another task dropped in their queue, who needs to be allowed to slow down because the risk of having to replace them if they burn out has a cost outweighing the value of the expected additional productivity, and who needs to be removed because their stress level increases too quickly per unit additional load.

Even if you name-check ‘wellness’, the point of quantifying the human resources is to try to increase the speed of the assembly line.


Except we already know, through our primitive meat-interfaces that the office is too hot/cold, but the fucking building management put in dummy thermostats so that we only think we can change the temp. We already know more natural light and fresh air would be nicer through our primitive meat-sensors, but we are still crammed into a cube in the middle of a giant 3rd floor bullpen.

I don’t think the tech gap is the problem…


I doubt it will be common to use this to increase productivity, not under capitalism.

I mean, governments, corporations, etc. use strobe lights everywhere, they aren’t thinking of neuro-anything or of not-inficting-pain. Many also use tvs, loud noises, and/or ceiling fans under the lights in waiting areas.

I suspect it will be relatively common to use this to increase pain in torture cells.



(Edited to add other text, pointless to the narrative but important to getting the damn thing published)

Which environmental setting will the system tweak when it senses my brainwaves reacting to my boss giving me a huge new project, then responding to my “you realize that you said the last project was my number one priority…” with “well, I guess you have two number one priorities!”…more oxygen?

Fantastic article! If Mondo 2000 were still around today, this is what they would be publishing. Nice job,

@pesco, more stuff like this please!

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Our offices will respond to our brainwaves.

I am imagining the horror of a psychic clippy.


Just be sure never to imagine the horror of a psychic clippy if you are in the vicinity of a psychic clippy. That’s a recursive hellscape from which there is no waking.


I wonder if neurotech can help stop people from using “impact” as a verb. For the love of god, make it stop.

Boing Boing hates your caps lock.

wait… “neurotech” or “neurotic”?


Links to the article seem to have gone cactus.

Wait… what about “impacted” (like in dentistry)? Is that unacceptable to you, or is it derived in some linguistic way that I’m not understanding?

That’s an adjective.