The BRAIN Initiative

02 Apr 2013

Today, President Obama unveiled Brain Research Through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies:

Today at the White House, President Obama unveiled the “BRAIN” Initiative—a bold new research effort to revolutionize our understanding of the human mind and uncover new ways to treat, prevent, and cure brain disorders like Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia, autism, epilepsy, and traumatic brain injury.

A few things:

  1. This is fantastic.
  2. Contrived acronyms like this and countless others in D.C.—PATRIOT, etc.—are nauseating and senseless.
  3. If the name were BRAIN Research Through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies, it would almost be redeemable, because then it would be a recursive acronym. Since recursion—self-reference—is so incredibly central to the idea of consciousness, I think it might provide some value and undo the stupendous ridiculousness of the acronym.