Eyes seem to be flavour of the month at the moment 🙂 PZ has just put up a fascinating post – about using MRI technology to see the images forming in the visual cortex of volunteers as they look at pictures of letters of the alphabet.
Truly. But he points out that it’s not like Big Brother will be using this technique to read your mind any time soon. For a start, it takes a fair bit of time, partly because the volunteers had to stare fixedly at the pictures for 12 seconds – that’s a very long time to keep your eyes fixed on a single point. (Normally your eyes are constantly in motion, even if you’re not aware of it.)
Anyway, go over there & read the whole thing. When I first saw it, it reminded me of the old (& I thought rather creepy) idea that the last thing someone saw as they died was imprinted on their retina. So if someone was murdered while looking the bad guy in the face, you had only to find some way of visualising that image & bingo! you had your man. Or woman. In one case this led to quite a lot of frogs (I think, from memory) dying rather abrupt deaths so that the researcher could ‘develop’ the retinal image. Think what he could have done with MRI!