are happening. A successful prosthetic hippocampus would spark the beginning of an era of cybernetic beings. In my honest opinion, the limbic system is what forms our personality, it makes us who we are. The hippocampus, part of the limbic system is responsible for essentially "routing" new memories into long-term storage. The scientific world would benefit in at least two areas. First, naturally, it would benefit patients who have lost the ability to form new memories (like in "Memento"). Secondly, a functioning silicon hippocampus that works in a real human being could be used in an artificial being and be the start of the first true artificial intelligence i.e. a human brain can be simulated in software and could actually gain consciousness, which ultimately would result in mechanical brains with consciousness i.e. androids.
Anyways, successful or not, it would make for some good science fiction. Imagine a big brotheresque world in which memories are implanted to alter the past.
[UPDATE] looks like the story has been picked up by both slashdot and boingboing, the comments by bloggers and slashdotters will be entertaining, to say the least.
This weekend I will be going to Austin to visit a cousin and check out SXSW, i'm hoping to catch the molotov show if possible. If not there are plenty of others i would like to attend.