Monday, September 19, 2011

Joe Haldeman's "None So Blind" (short story, superman, free): Redeploying the human visual cortex

This very amusing story has its technological parts premised on this: if more than a third of human brain is devoted to dealing with visual signals from the eyes, why aren't the blind people geniuses as a rule (since this much brain capacity is lying "unused" in them)?

That leads to actual technology that lets a surgeon tinker with the optic nerves to help brain rewire itself - so we get intellectual supermen off the operating table!

See also.

  1. John Wyndham's "The Day of the Triffids": Is based on the antithesis: however big a brain, without eyes, it's not much use. If most of the world were to go blind suddenly, our large brains won't save us from even small-brained menaces.

Fact sheet.

First published: Asimov's, November 1994.
Download full text from one of the author's sites. [via an anonymous visitor of Variety SF]
Rating: A.
Winner of Hugo Award 1995 in short story category.
Nominated for Nebula Award 1995 in short story category.
Related: Stories of Joe Haldeman.