Self-doubt: placed by culture, removed by mad science

Brain manipulation via electricity.
Sally Adee does what makes Wired actually good, underneath the manic trend-jumping and the boosting of dubious shiny gadgets. She takes a cyberpunk-seeming story, explains it is already happening, and points out social implications.

The cyberpunk story goes like this. Putting some electrodes on your brain can double the rate at which you learn. Why? Because it turns off the inner voice that constantly tells you how much a mess you’re making of life:

Me without self-doubt was a revelation. There was suddenly this incredible silence in my head; I’eve experienced something close to it during 2-hour Iyengar yoga classes, but the fragile peace in my head would be shattered almost the second I set foot outside the calm of the studio. I had certainly never experienced instant zen in the frustrating middle of something I was terrible at.

And once you realise how much self-doubt drags us back, you can’t help but wonder where it comes from:

could school-age girls use the zappy cap while studying math to drown out the voices that tell them they can’t do math because they’re girls? How many studies have found a link between invasive stereotypes and poor test performance?

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