On Fri, Mar 2, 2012 at 8:32 AM, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:

> It depends how good the artificial brain stem was. The more of the
> brain you try to replace, the more intolerant it will be, probably
> exponentially so. Just as having four prosthetic limbs would be more
> of a burden than just one, the more the ratio of living brain to
> prosthetic brain tilts toward the prosthetic, the less person there is
> left. It's not strictly linear, as neuroplasticity would allow the
> person to scale down to what is left of the natural brain (as in cases
> where people have an entire hemisphere removed), and even if the
> prosthetics were good it is not clear that it would feel the same for
> the person. If the person survived with an artificial brain stem, they
> may never again feel that they were 'really' in their body again. If
> the cortex were replaced, they may regress to infancy and never be
> able to learn to use the new brain.

It's not a completely adequate artificial brain stem or cortex if it
doesn't work properly, is it? Just as an artificial heart that doesn't
increase output appropriately in response to exercise is not
completely adequate, though it might be adequate to prevent the person
from dying immediately.

Stathis Papaioannou

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