Current methods for improving your mood are wildly inefficient. Recreational drugs can make you crazy, pharmaceuticals can erase your personality and damage your organs. Sugar and alcohol make you fat and depressed. Caffeine stresses you out, and cigarettes fill your lungs with death. We don’t welcome these side effects, but we deal with them because these substances have the potential to alter our emotional thermostat.
It would be so much easier if we could bypass the body altogether and go straight to the source: Our brain. What if there were a better way than shoving something in our mouth, forcing it to travel all over our bloodstream, and blindly showering our brains with thousands of chemicals? What if we could, with the push of a button, make microscopic alterations of a few neurons, causing the happy chemicals to ring out in a jackpot celebration, with no side effects? Would we be ready to handle such complete control over our emotional reality?
What It’s Like To Navigate The Internet While Blind
As Petr Kucheryavyy scrolls through his Facebook feed, his iPhone spews out a string of unintelligible syllables, not unlike the sounds C-3PO made in Empire Strikes Back when Chewbacca screwed his head on backward. The words move way too fast for me to understand, but Kucheryavyy navigates his audio-based internet world with ease. Images appear on the screen, but he doesn’t see them: Kucheryavyy’s been blind since the age of nine.
“If you go to one of the conventions for the National Federation of the Blind, you’ll hear thousands of phones making these sounds,” he tells VICE. “Apple has figured out that if they build these things on the front end, and make them accessible, there is a giant community of people who will reimburse their investment.”