Elon Musk wants everyone to have brain surgery. In particular, he wants everyone to receive a brain transplant – a brain-machine interface created by his company, Neuralink. He says that it will be able to resolve any medical condition – including paralysis, anxiety and addiction.
Machines that connect to the human brain and since 2006 translate electrical signals onto a computer. Since then, neuroscientists and engineers have improved that technique. Musk’s Neurallink slot in that work: The company developed a system of thin wires that go into the snake’s brain, which can cause less damage than normal hard spikes. But Musk’s ambitions go far beyond changing the architecture of machine-brain devices. In addition to treating brain-based medical conditions, he also stated during a recent press event that, ultimately, Neuralink’s device can enable such things as telepathy or interaction between the brain and artificial intelligence.
For now, those goals are far out of reach. Scientists need to know more about the brain and how it works for any of those ideas to become reality. The brain is still mysterious, and the neurological causes of things like anxiety and addiction are still unclear. In latest Scientific science Video, we explore what Neuralink might be able to do, and the elements of Musk’s proposals need more science behind them.