Friday, February 11, 2011

303: The Brain and the Liar

The title of this project is "The Mystery of the Brain". This means that it is not a 100% philosophical project, but an interdisciplinary one which involves, evolutionary psychology, neurosciences, cognitive psychology and philosophy.

Our premise is a materialistic starting point: We are our brain. All what we call mental is produced by that brain. Of course we'll discuss this premise extensively, but not yet.

With the topic of lie detection we enter a very sensitive area. What has been hidden inside our skull since the origins of mankind, can now be revealed.

Everything that we regard as private, can be shown in an fMRI scan. Behind me you see the picture of the brain of a liar.

There also other techniques, which use electrodes on de skull. And it is already discovered, that it takes 200 milliseconds more to prepare a lie in the brain than the truth.

This neurorevolution raises serious questions about the relation between the state and the individual. Where begins our privacy? Can we be forced to undergo a fMRI scan?

And what will happen in court? Has the accused to allow a fMRI scan to demonstrate if he is lying. And the witnesses, shouldn't they be scanned too?

What about the concept of guilt. Suppose we scan the brain of a murderer and ask him : "Did you kill that person?" and he answers "No, I didn't" (even tho we have a video of his crime) and his brain shows no special activity at all, not the "lie pattern"?

The more we know how the brain works, how our actions are caused by our brain, the more urgent become questions after personal autonomy, responsibility and free will.

By inventing the subconscious Freud already questioned our free will and responsibility for our actions. The deeper we can look into our brain and see causes and effects, the bigger such questions become.

Patricia Churchland, neurophilosopher at the University of San Diego, suggest that it is about time that we revise our metaphysical concept of free will.

Her idea is that instead we should talk about self-control. A less vague quality, which as we can see, manifests itself in varying degrees.

Neuroscientists can specify which brain structures are involved in the control of all kinds of behavior and how they can be weakened or reinforced.

The activities concerning lie detection have gone commercial already. We keep on dreaming of unmasking the lie. Cephos is one of these companies, which will help you.

On their homepage we read:
- quote
Cephos employs experienced professionals who are recognized as experts in their respective fields and are available to testify in court.

We have developed the latest, most scientifically advanced, brain imaging techniques for scientifically accurate lie detection.

The methods have been featured in international print, national television shows and we have been awarded U.S. patents based on our technology.

The array of services we offer allows the most innovative approaches to uncover the truth. That's why law firms, corporations, and individuals turn to Cephos for professional, responsible, and dedicated services.
-end quote.

Go now to and watch the 4 minutes video. See for yourself…… and if you haven't had enough, have a look at or read this article or

The Discussion

[13:25] herman Bergson: But have a look at that video...
[13:26] herman Bergson: I'll wait the 4 minutes

[13:31] herman Bergson: Did you look at the video?
[13:31] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): yes
[13:31] Ciska Riverstone: yes
[13:31] Adriana Jinn: yes
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:31] herman Bergson: It scared me...
[13:31] Anja Tigerfish: yes
[13:31] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): why?
[13:31] Mick Nerido: very scary...
[13:32] herman Bergson: Well...first...the blood pumping theory….
[13:32] herman Bergson: completely unclear what areas of the brain were active and why
[13:32] Mick Nerido: A persons mind is private like his home . No?
[13:32] herman Bergson: well you saw....his wife lives there now too ^_^
[13:33] Mick Nerido: lol
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: i guess if u in general answer uncomfortable questions will give same activity in blood flow no matter if true or false
[13:33] herman Bergson: Could be true Bejiita
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: and thus give uncorrect conclusions
[13:33] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): he already knew the questions
[13:34] herman Bergson: Yes that is the procedure...
[13:34] herman Bergson: the client studies the questions in advance
[13:34] Bejiita Imako: that seemed a bit wierd too
[13:34] herman Bergson: But what was so scary to me was that this couple came for an answer and in fact didnt get it...
[13:35] herman Bergson: No is good to have knowledge of the questions....the brain can't lie...
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: meaning the company is a scam thats just after your wallet
[13:35] herman Bergson: to some extend I would say yes...
[13:36] herman Bergson: To give you a reason....
[13:36] herman Bergson: when you swallow during answering the questions...your brain will become active
[13:36] herman Bergson: and screws up the test because of the 'blood pumping'
[13:36] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): omg
[13:37] Adriana Jinn: well
[13:37] Mick Nerido: Like lie dectators, some can fool it
[13:37] herman Bergson: yes must absolutel lie still.....not a muscle may move
[13:37] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): if you talk you move
[13:38] herman Bergson: answers are given by mouseclick....know motoric part of the brain
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: hmm yes also do fMRIs make awful loud banging noises due to the superconductors turning on and of and stressing the brain
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: i thing even u need hearing protection as it can be as loud as 120 db
[13:39] herman Bergson: least you have seen a glimpse of our future...
[13:39] Mick Nerido: Could this be used in capital punishment as a recourse of last resort?
[13:39] herman Bergson: Yes...Mick.....
[13:39] herman Bergson: The courts in the US do not yet accept this evidence....
[13:39] Mick Nerido: If you lie the machine kills you
[13:40] herman Bergson: that will be the 2.0 model Mick
[13:40] Mick Nerido: lol
[13:40] Bejiita Imako: haha
[13:40] herman Bergson: we are just working on version 1.0
[13:40] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): you laugh..but it COULD be possible
[13:40] herman Bergson: oh yes....
[13:41] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): who is to establsih that the machine is 100%accurate? there seems to be always an element of doubt
[13:41] Mick Nerido: brave new world indeed
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: think so too Aristotle
[13:41] herman Bergson: as I said Aristotle...when you swallow during the test all goes wrong...
[13:41] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): especially in a capital punishment decision
[13:41] Mick Nerido: best 2 out of 3 tests
[13:41] herman Bergson: But look at the Brain Fingerprinting material....
[13:42] herman Bergson: the brain produces certain waves when seeing something familiar
[13:42] herman Bergson: so when you show the criminal the face of his victim the brain will react if he has seen that face
[13:43] herman Bergson: But what if it is the face of his sister?
[13:43] herman Bergson: And so on....
[13:43] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): I think commercially it will be very beneficial for marketers, in the legal arena I am extremely supect
[13:43] Bejiita Imako: yes can be anyone he knows then he react to
[13:44] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): suspect
[13:44] herman Bergson: However...this is our future....the brain will be the place to be...
[13:44] Mick Nerido: I'll buy stock in Cephos
[13:44] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): Orwell was a smart man
[13:45] herman Bergson: What was most remarkable was that as soon as someone had found something in lie detection....they went commercial...started a company...
[13:45] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): Big Brother is watching you?
[13:45] herman Bergson: Cephos and Brain Fingerprinting are the leading companie in the business...
[13:45] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): and manipulating you for sure, Beertje
[13:45] Mick Nerido: there goes job interview lies
[13:46] herman Bergson: yes indeed Mich....thy just put you in a scanner
[13:46] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): LOL who will find jobs now?
[13:46] Mick Nerido: the ones who lie least?
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: or most
[13:46] herman Bergson: no..only scanner operators
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: depends on job.
[13:47] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): are they the best employees, tath is the philosophical question
[13:47] Mick Nerido: Buy you way in
[13:47] herman Bergson: Main question is privacy.....
[13:47] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): and when Cephos is lying?
[13:48] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): lol
[13:48] Bejiita Imako: hehehe
[13:48] herman Bergson: It will suffer of blood pumping Beertje :-)
[13:48] herman Bergson: But just think about it.....
[13:48] herman Bergson: what has been our personal domain since the beginning of mankind....
[13:48] Mick Nerido: good for airline scanning
[13:48] herman Bergson: is going to be invaded too
[13:49] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): mankind has always methods to pull the truth out of you..
[13:49] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): Shall we all have an international barcode with the results of our last MRI for all to read our 'label'
[13:50] herman Bergson: Was just thinking that Beertje....they dont need to torture the person anymore when they can use the fMRI scanner
[13:50] Mick Nerido: good idea Aristotle
[13:50] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): hmm..the only possitive thing
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: as long u can get the technology working
[13:51] Bejiita Imako: as said that damn "blood pumping" theory doesnt hold at all
[13:51] Bejiita Imako: need some better stuff
[13:51] herman Bergson: It scared me Bejiita
[13:51] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): what about people with a high blood presure?
[13:51] Bejiita Imako: or everyone will be accuseed to be a terrorist
[13:51] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): wont need religion anymore,the barcode will say whether we are good or bad
[13:51] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): all hail the MRI
[13:51] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): just tells us if we are lying
[13:52] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): telling the truth about our misbehave is the truth
[13:52] Adriana Jinn: .))))
[13:52] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): and the neuroscientists become the new clergy
[13:52] herman Bergson: Well my friends......
[13:53] herman Bergson: yes Aristotle...
[13:53] Mick Nerido: Mind priests
[13:53] herman Bergson: I never ended a lecture with an uneasy feeling
[13:53] herman Bergson: but this time I do....
[13:53] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): did you tell the truth about this Herman?
[13:54] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): LOL
[13:54] Anja Tigerfish: hahahahaaaa
[13:54] Bejiita Imako: hahaha
[13:54] Ciska Riverstone laughs
[13:54] herman Bergson: feels his blood pumping...
[13:54] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): scan his barcode
[13:54] herman Bergson: Yes I did Beertje
[13:54] Mick Nerido: one of the best lectures I heard
[13:54] Bejiita Imako: aaa indeed
[13:54] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): smiles
[13:54] Bejiita Imako: ㋡
[13:54] Mick Nerido: No lie
[13:54] Adriana Jinn: very interesting yes
[13:54] herman Bergson: Thank you all for your participation...
[13:55] herman Bergson: Class dismissed ^_^
[13:55] Ciska Riverstone: interessting as always - thank you herman
[13:55] herman Bergson: That is no lie!
[13:55] Bejiita Imako: but hope for sure this detector practice wont develop in a bad way
[13:55] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): thank you Herman:)
[13:55] Adriana Jinn: thanks much herman
[13:55] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): very stimulating Professor, thank you
[13:55] Bejiita Imako: noone is messing inside my mind without permission at least
[13:55] Bejiita Imako: picking out whatever they want
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: and not my harddrives either
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: my stuff is my stuff
[13:56] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): I fear they mess with our minds straight from the cradle
[13:56] bergfrau Apfelbaum: ty, herman and class! was interesting, again once!
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: aaa yes
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: very
[13:56] Bejiita Imako: ㋡
[13:56] Ciska Riverstone: Have a great day/ night everyone
[13:56] herman Bergson: Thank you all...
[13:56] Adriana Jinn: bye all and thanks
[13:57] herman Bergson: Bye Adriana
[13:57] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): bye Adriana
[13:57] Bejiita Imako: cu soon again
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: •´¨*•.¸.♥ Bye Bye ♥.¸.•*¨`•
[13:57] Bejiita Imako: hugs all
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: yeeahhh...huggy and kissy for all
[13:57] bergfrau Apfelbaum: see u hursday
[13:57] bergfrau Apfelbaum: :-)
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: *-*rOfl*-*
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: *-*r0fl*-*
[13:57] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): bye bye:)
[13:57] bergfrau Apfelbaum: bybye all
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: Tschüss machs gut bis zum nächsten Mal
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: bye
[13:57] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): I willsee if I can even TP now LOL
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: ______ ()*"*()___
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: _____("(~¸¸~)")___
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: Müde bin ich,geh zur Ruh,
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: mache meine Augen zu.
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: Erst das Rechte,dann das Linke,
[13:57] Anja Tigerfish: Gute Nacht und winke winke
[13:57] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): Good Bye!
[13:57] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): gentle folks
[13:58] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): Good Bye!
[13:58] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): Good Byeeeee!!!
[13:58] :: Beertje :: (beertje.beaumont): biss zum naechsten mahl Bergie
[13:58] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): EVERYBODY!!! :D
[13:58] Aristotle von Doobie (aristotlevon.doobie): thanks again Herman
[13:58] herman Bergson: You are welcome, Aristotle
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