Neuralink is the leading company attempting to make a "brain machine." This machine comprises a chip implanted in the brain, and this chip works with supercomputers that help an impaired human being control some things—imagine controlling games in an online site like verdecasino with your brain and no hands!
Today, we will look at the possible future of Neuralink under Elon Musk's leadership. We will discuss its current state and what its plans are.
There are plans to test the Neuralink system on humans in 2023. The chips they have now are supposed to enable a direct interface between a human brain and a computer program.
Musk, who co-founded the company, is now in the process of seeking approval from the Food and Drug Administration so he can begin human trials. The plan is to implant the brain chip in a human being in the next six months.
What the Neuralink chip will do is read electrodes in the brain. The neurons in the brain are the ones that send signals. The chip will read the signals and then transmit them to a computer.
So, what can it do, or how is it supposed to help people?
Here are some case uses:
Help restore the vision of people who lost their sight.
Help restore motor function.
Help control machines with the brain only, with no hands.
If the computer can read the brain signal, it is possible for the brain to "send a command" to the chip, like "left-click the mouse."
In this regard, a person who lost the use of his limbs either from amputation or paralysis can type on a computer.
For the implant, Musk and his team demonstrated a robot capable of implanting the chip into the brain without damaging the blood vessels.
According to Musk, the size of the chip is similar to a U.S. quarter. This size is just about as thick as the skull that has to be removed for implantation. The chip is not going to be a hassle—it is unobtrusive.
Will Neuralink Brain Implants Succeed?
No one knows, but it is likely to succeed.
If you do not know it yet, the company has already implanted Neuralink in the brains of a macaque monkey and a pig. Right now, Musk is in the process of hiring a clinical trial director specific to human beings.
According to Musk, Neuralink can help people with spinal cord injuries. The brain chip can help people who are tetraplegic and quadriplegic.
Furthermore, he said there is a chance the Neuralink may restore full functionality of the body. He also said that the Neuralink could be removed safely.
The issue is that Musk has a reputation for promising to deliver results and yet failing to do so. For example, he said several times that Tesla would release cars, but then many people are still waiting for their pre-ordered cars.
In 2019, Musk said that the Neuralink should be implanted in a human brain by the end of 2020. Of course, it did not happen.
The Goal Of Neuralink
Musk launched Neuralink with half a dozen researchers. He said that his goal is to address the A.I. symbiosis problem. He believes that A.I. is an existential threat.
In the near term, what Musk wants is to use the chip to solve problems of the brain, or problems where a certain part of the body is not working, like the limbs. The chip can also help people with Dementia.
Can Neuralink Fail?
Neuralink is what we call BCI, or brain-computer interface. These things are not new. Technology has been around for decades.
One doctor, John Donoghue, said that they implanted a similar device to a human brain back in the early 2000s. Since then, numerous studies have proved that it can work with human beings.
In these studies, they proved that the BCI implants allowed humans to do things they normally could not, such as shopping online or controlling their paralyzed limbs. These people could also control computer mouse and cursor with the help of the implant.
Although there were successes in the past, there are still experts who say that the success of the implant is not safe. Some say that Neuralink did not really make any progress compared to what BCI was decades ago.
There was even someone who said that no one cares about any science experiment if it does not help patients. Some also say that regulators must determine if Neuralink poses any health risks to the patients.
Overall, we can only hope for the success of Neuralink because it will help a lot of people. Many individuals are suffering on the planet, and technology like this can be a life-changer.