Neuralink Displays a Robotic Surgeon And a Brain Implant Prototype
On Wednesday night, Elon Musk staged a spectacular celebration for another of his businesses: Neuralink, a firm that is considering implants that would link your mind to a computer.
During the occasion, a video was shown that, according to Musk, demonstrated a monkey utilizing a brain implant to move a cursor and text on a computer.
It's not a brand-new technology; for decades, scientists have been developing tools that can analyze brain impulses for useful purposes. It has been done before to let someone type text or play video games using only their brain.
The main objective of the "show and tell" event, according to Musk, was to entice talent to Neuralink.
People frequently believe they wouldn't be able to work at Neuralink because they lack biological or cognitive knowledge, according to Musk. When you break down the abilities required to make Neuralink operate, it's many of the same skills required to make a wristwatch or current phone work, so the thing we want to underline here is that you don't need to.
Vice President of Implants at Neuralink, DJ Seo, demonstrated the most recent model of the company's gadget and mentioned that it will be cordless and chargeable. In addition, he showed a video of a robot he said was created to do the implant operation and demonstrated what it may entail, stating that production and a test facility were being established in Austin, Texas.
To improve the bonds between humans and computers by implanting chips into people's brains, Musk founded Neuralink more than 5 years ago. The business has solely used animals in its testing thus far.
For instance, Neuralink claimed last year that it had successfully enabled monkeys to play the computer game Pong using just their brain implants, even though a person with a brain implant had achieved a comparable feat more than ten years prior. On Wednesday, Musk praised the video of the monkey engaging in another round of Pong.
Activists, though, are incensed by the usage of animals. The business has admitted that a monkey had passed away throughout the testing procedure.
Musk said on Wednesday, "We do all we can with thorough benchtop testing so we're not casual about putting things inside animals.
Numerous moral and political issues are raised by Neuralink's central premise. However, advocates claim that these tools offer amputees and disabled people a life-altering helping hand if they, for instance, lose the ability to use their hands or see.
Musk does, however, also favor non-medical applications, such as utilizing brain transplants to equalize the playing field if digital AI surpasses all human intelligence.
How can we reduce that risk? at the level of species?" Musk enquired on Wednesday. "How do we go along for the ride, even in a benign situation where the AI is very, very benevolent?"
Other companies than Musk's Neuralink are working on this technology. Additionally, some scientists working with federal funding have already started certain clinical trials.
Musk was questioned about Neuralink's plans to make its tools available to neuroscientists during the session on Wednesday. He retorted that the business would once it entered the manufacturing stage.
Neuralink's brain implants will require regulatory clearance before they are mass manufactured and made available to the general public. In a document published in May of last year, the US Food and Drug Administration outlined the agency's early opinions on brain-computer interface devices and noted that the subject is "progressing quickly."
According to Musk, Neuraink has "most" of its paperwork into the FDA and may start conducting human tests in six months, he said on Wednesday. However, it should be remembered that Musk routinely makes promises about deadlines that never materialize, from his assertions about when SpaceX will launch its Mars rocket to orbit to his forecasts about when self-driving vehicles would be available for use.
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