Will Knowledge and Skills Be Uploaded To The Brain Someday?

in technology •  7 months ago


The amount of things that we learn from childhood is just staggering. We generally don’t give much thought to it but there are thousands of complex things we learn right from our infancy.

We learn to ‘read’ objects in our 3D world and how to interact with them, we learn to read, write, stand, walk, run, speak, communicate, think, play and so much more.

All of that is done by repeating the tasks over and over again until we gain ‘mastery’ over it. It is made possible by a process called neural plasticity where the brain creates and strengthens neural pathways to allow information to transfer between brain cells.

So, each time we learn something new, the brain is literally rewiring itself to allow for it and that takes time. But wouldn’t it be so much easier if we could just upload knowledge or skills directly to the brain?

New Skills On Demand


Thanks to the world of the internet, we are now habituated for everything on demand, whether it is content, or food or any other services like booking a cab. Everything is accessible to us on demand.

What if we could do the same with skills? What if we could learn anything whenever we wanted and wherever we wanted in a matter of minutes? Seems pretty sci-fi, right? That’s because it is. At least for now.

If this reminds you of a movie, you are probably thinking about the Matrix, in which the hero called Neo was able to learn Kung Fu in a matter of seconds when the necessary skillset was uploaded to his brain. But the matrix was itself a software so that is quite easy to do as we can program a game character to do anything in the real world too.

Doing that with real human beings in the real world, is a tough nut to crack. In mid 2016, there were articles on the internet which claimed that scientists had come up with ways to help people learn faster thanks to brain stimulation, and that is probably the closest we have ever come.

Will It Be Possible?


I think so. Science and technology have a habit of making the seemingly impossible become possible and all of history is a proof of that. So, I do think that one day it might be possible. When that will happen is anyone’s guess. Maybe after a few decades.

Military agencies like DARPA have been reported to be working on their Targeted Neuroplasticity Training (TNT) program which aims to hack learning and upload skills directly to the brain.

Although I personally don’t wish for such a tech to be used for military purpose, I would be happy to see it in classrooms, or other places where we learn essential life skills like driving, swimming, defending ourselves among other things.

I am aware that such a technology could have really catastrophic repercussions in the hands of bad agents and so we need to be careful about its development. We don’t want to have millions of spy like crafty people all around us, do we?

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Although I personally don’t wish for such a tech to be used for military purpose
It is exactly what will happen, as you know as well; remember the internet? It passed through the military first then came to the masses. Even the popular SHA-256 algorithm was developed by the NSA.

As nice and exciting as it may be, i think it will be a scary world to live in. Super intelligent rapists and murderers that have superb strategic skills? lol. The normal citizen equipped with swimming, martial arts, driving etc. wont stand a chance. It'll become survival of the fittest. But seeing how software is becoming more and more decentralised it may become a level playing field for all. It'll just be a race to see who can saturate their brains with information the fastest to have the edge over other humans (as you discussed in your blog: https://busy.org/@sauravrungta/want-to-be-happy-stop-comparing-yourself-to-people).

I like your ideas :)


Yeah, human nature is such that they would want to be more than the others, so such a tech if launched to masses could easily lead to chaos. It could be a start of another race, where people are downloading skills and knowledge left, right and centre to upload it to their brains. And we all know what people would choose to do with their enhanced abilities.

I also agree that any such tech would pass through the military first. That's just how it is. It's sad really but the military doesn't leave a single method to further their cause of death and destruction.


In an age of abundance what will drive conflict?


are you familiar with current trends?

"Violence has been in decline over long stretches of time", says Harvard professor Steven Pinker, "and we may be living in the most peaceful time in our species' existence."

To the question in your title, my Magic 8-Ball says:

Do not count on it

Hi! I'm a bot, and this answer was posted automatically. Check this post out for more information.


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Thanks for this!!

@sauravrungupta, a good raising of topic and as per the technology are growing, this thing may be possible someday.


Yeah, I think so too!

the hero called Neo was able to learn Kung Fu in a matter of seconds when the necessary skillset was uploaded to his brain.

I missed that part.



a thousand times yes. I want it.

I've got a grand kid. He's about 2 years old now. He's smart as a whip and learns so fast that it's a bit scary.

most kids are born geniues and soak up information and knowledge like a dessicated sponge soaks up water.

It takes 12 years of schooling to indoctrinate them not to do that. Sometimes it doesn't 'take' even then.


That was a really good part in the movie and that would be so cool to be able to do that. And if such a thing were to be possible in real life, I am sure most people would jump at the opportunity.


I certainly would.

"I would be happy to see it in classrooms"

I would guess that classrooms, along with schools and other institutions of learning, would become obsolete when all knowledge and skills could be quickly uploaded to the brain. That would put a lot of power in the hands of those who digitized the uploads.
I wonder if "common sense" would be among uploads offered.


If a tech like that were to become a reality, it would only see a limited use at first in classrooms and other institutions. Then slowly, it would make all the learning institutes obsolete for sure. haha I hope common sense is one of them lol