I’m trying to build a portable brain scanner that will read your brain activity and play it back as sounds. Just kidding. But I am trying to make something like that using a smoke-and-mirrors method, so I’ll probably use something like Arduino to make something really quick that just reads a physiological signal like skin conductance (but have people believe that it’s your brain’s signals) and based on that reading, the Arduino will play back a mashup of different noises and sounds inspired by music from the Portal 2 soundtrack.

For my deliverable, I’ll probably try to make a device like this (I have the first 2 items on the checklist completed. Much of the Arduino programming thanks to Stelios Giannoulis who has done something similar in Arduino), and set it in a setting that is supposed to resemble one of those little booths in CVS where you can take your blood pressure. People will be able to sit down and put the device on, “listen” to their brain, and then an iPad screen will pop up with suggestions on pills/books to buy based on their reading (very much like how people self-diagnose by reading “neuroscience”-supported self-help books today)… I’ve also been reading Brain Culture, which is a look at how neuroscience is influencing our culture today not just in terms of how what “health” means to us, but also in terms of larger-scale policies that are sometimes too easily influenced by a few images of brain scans. I think it’s helped me narrow down the genre that I will be criticizing and looking at which is self-help books that have a neuroscience bent to them…

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