They say the brain is the most powerful weapon. If new advancements in neuroscience are any indication, we could be seeing soldiers plug into weapon systems — Matrix-style — to control things like drones.
According to the U.K.'s Royal Science, new "techniques used widely in neuroscience are on the brink of being adopted by the military [UK military] to improve the training of soldiers, pilots and other personnel."
Research shows that weak electrical signals shot through the skull can lead to improved accuracy for things like spotting roadside bombs and snipers in a virtual reality training sim. In some cases, "accuracy increased nearly twice as fast as those who had minimal stimulation." Great! Zap me now!
If things keep coming along, the military could use brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) to allow for mind-controllable weapon systems. The findings suggest that because the brain can process images, such as targets faster than we can physically respond, it could lead to some seriously accurate target practice.
There are ethical concerns surrounding the use of BMIs, though. Like who would get the blame if something goes sideways and the wrong target is hit? The man controlling the weapon, or the machine plugged into the man? Probably, the guy behind the weapon. It's his mind that'd be in command, but he'd still be responsible for the failure.
It's probably safe to say that this kind of tech won't be available for regular gun aficionados anytime soon. All hell would break if we could fire a gun simply by thinking about it. But what do I know about real war? It could mean life and death out there in places like the Pakistan mountains.