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Making Sense of the Future

Barry Smith presents a journey into the human multi-sensory experience. How our senses can be extended, augmented, repaired or enhanced.

A journey into the human multi-sensory experience, with philosopher Barry Smith and sound artist Nick Ryan.

In this episode, we look at the future of our senses; how science, technology and a plastic fantastic brain can give us more from our senses than ever before.

For thousands of years people thought we had 5 senses, now it's believed we have up to 33. In this new series, philosopher Barry Smith and sound artist Nick Ryan take us into the extraordinary world of sensory perception.

Barry Smith gets stuck into the science of 'hacking' our senses - making one sense do the work of another, re-routing the sensory pathways in the brain, and with the help of technology, rebuilding and repairing senses which we thought were damaged beyond repair. He explores the science behind inventions like the 'tactile mattress', to be worn on tongue, which can give sight-like sensation to those with no vision. And he meets the poet and musician Josephine Dickinson, and unravels the story of her journey in and out of deafness, with a cochlear implant.

Producer: Emily Knight.

Available now

15 minutes