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Elective Electrode Enthusiasts — an Empirical Ethnography


April 30, 2014 6:15pm - 7:45pm

Room 85
Strange though it may sound, thriving online communities have sprung up connecting people with a most unusual hobby: affixing electrode sponges to their scalps and running nine volts of current through their craniums. Whatever else is true of these people, their shared interest is not mere pseudoscience: transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a well-studied technique with potential therapeutic and enhancement uses supported by exciting preliminary data. These do-it-yourself users appear to have no interest in waiting around for this technology gain widespread clinical or regulatory acceptance.

But who are these galvanic gallivanters, these voltaic venturers? What do they want from tDCS, and how safe do they feel using it? Come enjoy free pizza as Annie Jwa, a SPILS student, presents her research on the communities dedicated to pioneering tDCS use, and the people who form them.