March 1, 2013 Michael Chorost to Lecture on "How to Put Your Brain on the Internet," March 20

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Will there come a day when the brain is connected directly to the Internet? Emerging technologies allow brain activity to be read and altered in unprecedented detail, according to author Michael Chorost. In a lecture at the Library of Congress, he will outline what a future “World Wide Mind” could look like and discuss whether people would want to be part of it.

Chorost will present “How to Put Your Brain on the Internet” at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 20, in the Mumford Room on the sixth floor of the Library’s James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C.

Sponsored by the Library’s Science, Technology and Business Division, the lecture is free and open to the public. Tickets are not needed. A book signing and sale will follow the lecture.

Chorost is the author of “World Wide Mind: The Coming Integration of Humanity, Machines, and the Internet” (2011). The book examines the science of mind-reading and the prospect of enabling direct communication from one brain to another.

Chorost’s first book “Rebuilt: How Becoming Part Computer Made Me More Human” (2005) is a memoir of going deaf and getting a cochlear implant, which is a surgically implanted electronic device that provides a sense of sound. The book won the PEN USA Award for Creative Nonfiction in 2006 and was cited by the Los Angeles Times as “the first cyborg memoir.”

Totally deaf since 2001, Chorost now hears with two cochlear implants. The lecture also will include audio simulations of what Chorost hears as a cochlear implant user and will include videos of cutting-edge neuroprosthetic technologies.

Since 2005, Chorost has worked as a freelance writer, speaker and teacher. His work has appeared in Wired, New Scientist, Technology Review and other magazines. He makes frequent radio and television appearances, and has given 130 lectures at places such as Google, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Brown and Duke universities. In 2008-2009, he was a visiting professor at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C.

Chorost is a graduate of Brown University and holds a Ph.D. in digital humanities from the University of Texas at Austin. He first worked at a dot-com company in San Francisco and then at SRI International, a research institute in Silicon Valley.

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PR 13-037
ISSN 0731-3527