Synthetic Brains, Facebook & the New Revolution - SXSW Interactive 2013 by SXSW published on 2013-04-23T21:31:26Z Will we ever understand complex human experiences such as consciousness or emotions? Will there ever be a way to build synthetic brains or brain-like computers? The brain is a network of billions of interconnected cells and recent technological advances allow us to study the brain as an integrated network, much like Facebook. If you wanted to understand the Facebook network, you would not study each and every member. Rather, you would study how connections between members translate into interactions. You would observe communities that spontaneously emerge and topics that cascade across the network like viruses spreading on the internet. One might think that biomedical science would be on the forefront of utilizing such technologies. Unfortunately, biomedical science is mostly entrenched in methods and process thinking from the 1800s and 1900s. We are on the cusp of a transformation in scientific thinking that will allow us to begin to truly understand the functioning human brain.