Entrepreneur Elon Musk has announced that a Neuralink brain chip has been successfully implanted in a human for the first time.
According to Musk, the individual is recovering well after receiving the implant, and initial results indicate promising neuron spike detection.
The first human received an implant from @Neuralink yesterday and is recovering well.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 29, 2024
Initial results show promising neuron spike detection.
Neuralink, the neurotechnology company founded by Musk in 2016, aims to establish direct communication channels between the brain and computers.
The objective is to enhance human capabilities, treat neurological disorders like Parkinson’s, ALS and even potentially restore vision for individuals born blind.
In addition, the technology could potentially enable a close working relationship between humans and artificial intelligence.
Enables control of your phone or computer, and through them almost any device, just by thinking.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 30, 2024
Initial users will be those who have lost the use of their limbs.
Imagine if Stephen Hawking could communicate faster than a speed typist or auctioneer. That is the goal.
Musk envisions the ability to control devices such as phones and computers through neural signals. The initial users of this technology would be those who have lost the use of their limbs. Musk has expressed the goal of achieving communication abilities surpassing the speed of a typist or auctioneer, using the late Stephen Hawking as an example.
The first product from Neuralink is called Telepathy. Successful implementation of Neuralink could have significant implications for millions of people worldwide living with paralysis. Musk has also hinted at the possibility of further advancements, including merging humans with AI.
While the technology has been tested on terminally ill monkeys, Musk claims that no deaths have been caused by the chip. Regulatory approval has been granted for testing brain implants in humans.
Neuralink’s main technology, known as the “Link,” is a small device placed inside the human brain through invasive surgery. As of last year, Neuralink had over 400 employees and has raised at least $363 million in funding.
Other companies are also involved in brain-machine or brain-computer interface research, with Musk reportedly exploring potential investments in Australian-based implant developer Synchron.
Unlike Neuralink’s approach, Synchron’s implant version does not require cutting into the skull for installation and in July 2022, Synchron implanted its first device in a patient in the United States.