Elon Musk is apparently ready to reveal his ambitious project involving an interface that can be operated just by thinking, like literally and figuratively, on a public demonstration on Friday.
The Musk-led brain-hacking technology dubbed Neuralink entered human clinical trial last year after proving success with mice and apes.
The technology is supposed to harness the brain’s electrical signals – the basis of ‘thinking’ at physical levels – to drive a digital/machine interface through flexible threads thinner than a human hair.
Musk is set to demonstrate the brain-to-digital interface on Friday, in a live stream, Neuralink’s official twitter handle announced.
The Tesla and SpaceX owner’s aim through the breakthrough technology will be to usher an age of ‘superhuman cognition’ as Musk puts it. He also famously said, humans must be able to directly interact with AI before robots destroy the human race, the BBC reported.
The company’s product involves ultra-fine filaments that will be inserted in the brains through equally sophisticated surgical robots which will catch up to 1,000 neuron signals.
As per Musk’s tweets (retweeted by Neuralink handle), the company is still on the process of recruiting scientists last month.
Sophisticated, but controversial
Billionaire Musk’s touted purpose behind Neuralink is to provide relief from obsessive-compulsive disorders, traumatic brain injuries, anxiety or help a disabled or paralyzed effectively control different devices, but more apparently, the recent functions will be limited to the capacity to control wearables and smartphone via the brain.
In an interview with podcaster Joe Rogan, Musk gave an insight into the framework of his appealing – but controversial – Neuralink. He said:
“It basically implant [s] in your skull. You basically take out a chunk of the skull put the Neuralink device in there and insert the electrothreads very carefully into the brain and then you stitch it up, and you wouldn’t even know that somebody has it. It can interface basically anywhere in your brain.
In principle, it could fix almost anything wrong with the brain. It could restore limb functionality… It could restore someone who is a quadriplegic to full functionality.”
The Friday announcement will also update on the human trial results after testes on apes and mice proved successful a year ago. “Will show neurons firing in real-time on August 28th. The matrix in the matrix,” Musk tweeted last month.
“Neuralink has significant resources and critically a team of scientists, engineers, and clinicians working towards a common goal, which gives them a great chance of success,” Jennifer Collinger, University of Pittsburgh assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation told the BBC in a statement.
However, despite all the updates on the ‘futuristic’ venture, Elon Musk’s project is often shrouded from public purviews, like his other projects including the Space X.
The Neuralink, for instance, was launched in 2017, had only one major public demonstration of the project which has prompted some questions over the efficacy.