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Just Released: Cohesion Lost

Free New eBook for Next 3 Days!

Science Fiction Short Story Sale Ends June 1st

Avar-Tek Event 3: Cohesion Lost

eBook published May 2012
For Alexander Sevik, providing for his family is hard enough without losing grip on reality. His dreams are real. One night, he lives the entire life of a deckhand on a Spanish galleon. The next night, it’s life as an ancient Roman senator. Next, he is a cyborg on a space cruiser. When he wakes, he sometimes forgets who he is. His hands tingle for no reason, and the strange man who is following him talks about aliens. When he discovers the key to his dreams, he uncovers a national threat. And he has to choose between his own sanity or saving lives.
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Reader’s Reviews:
– “An wonderful futuristic look at the world where technology has pushed the limits of imagination but human nature remains the same.”
~ by Kay in an Amazon review
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– “The writing is the best, it kept me going, and I wanted to find out what happened next. It’s a must read! …well written, and the characters are well developed.”
~ by Health Nut in an Amazon review
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– “The story has mystery, conflict,and action, with the great plot twist that Justin Tyme does so well.”
~ by Shadowfeld in an Amazon review
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Visit the Smashwords for the free story. If you do download this story and like it, please drop by my website & sign up for more.

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DecNef – Learning Through Brain Mapping “Matrix” Style

** SPOILER ALERT **  If you have not read Cohesion Lost but plan to, then do not read this.  It contains information that will spoil the plot.

Researchers: Adult early visual areas are sufficiently plastic to cause visual perceptual learning.
Credit: Nicolle Rager Fuller, National Science Foundation

In the novel Cohesion Lost, Tenbu and his classmates use plexus beds to relive the lives of historic figures.  What a way to learn history.   Historical dates are no longer abstract.  When was the battle of Waterloo?

If you use plexus learning, you don’t have to memorize dates and events, you live them.  You don’t just read about historic icons, you meet them.  The plexus bed contains microscopic connectors that connect to your spinal cord and replace what you feel with what your character feels in an historical simulation. Let’s say you just finished the simulation of the Napoleonic Wars and someone asks you, when was the battle of Waterloo?  That’s easy.  It feels like last month.  You were there.

Can this work for real? We may never get that far, but recent research shows promise in the area of imprint learning (at Boston University and ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Kyoto, Japan).  “The technique is called “Decoded Neurofeedback”, or “DecNef”, and it involves using decoded fMRI to induce brain activity patterns that match a known state” (Scott Young, MedGadget: “Matrix” Style Learning Through the Visual Cortex).

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** PLUG ALERT **

What will it be like future students with DecNef and plexus beds?

Read Cohesion Lost and find out.

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Press release from the National Science Foundation: Vision Scientists Demonstrate Innovative Learning Method

Journal article in Science: Perceptual Learning Incepted by Decoded fMRI Neurofeedback Without Stimulus Presentation

Where Are All the Flying Cars?

I thought by now we would have flying cars, jet backpacks, and servant robots. This is almost 2012. I mean, come on.

1950s House of the Future from http://www.plan59.com

Futurists of the 1950s and 60s painted the new millennium as a place where mindless toil would be a thing of the past, a pristine environment where we’re all smiling and physically fit. Is that true? We’re not living in a utopia now. We have “eradicated” polio, but now have diabetes at epidemic levels. Physical toil such as walking has decreased, but in proportion to an increase in obesity. More social networking venues are available, yet we live in social decay. What’s wrong with this picture?

I believe our expectations have let us down. The expectation that the troubles we have today will be solved by better devices tomorrow: technology. If we can just get the next gadget, life would be so much better. We have the expectation that those better devices will have no unintended negative consequences such as pollution or causing another need such as longer battery life.

Is technology evil?

Although I have Amish neighbors, I am a techno-geek: an electrical engineer, computer programmer, and lover of all things cool and gadgety. I speak their language … eh, the language of the gadgets, not the Amish. I get down to the chip level and program FPGAs. (Those are Field Programmable Gate Arrays. Don’t ask what they are, I’ll bore you to death.) I have shepherded WIFI electronic products from inception to the EOL (End of Life) grave yard. I have run a software company and have dealt first hand with customer complaints. So, I have some understanding of what gadgets do … and don’t get us.

Technology hasn’t failed us, but our unrealistic expectations of it have failed us.

The future is the road ahead of us. We may never have flying cars, but there is at least one thing for sure down that road: us, with more expectations.