Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk’s brain-chip startup Neuralink issued a video on Friday appearing to show a monkey playing a simple videogame after getting implants of the new technology.
The 3-minute footage by Neuralink reveals Pager, a male macaque with chips implanted on each side of its brain, playing ‘Mind Pong’. Although he was guided to move a joystick, it is now unplugged. He commands the paddle easily by thinking about moving his hand up or down.
“First @Neuralink outcome will allow someone with paralysis to use a smartphone with their mind faster than someone using thumbs,” Musk tweeted here on Thursday.
“Following variants will be able to shunt signals from Neuralinks in the brain to Neuralinks in body motor/sensory neuron clusters, thus enabling, for example, paraplegics to walk again. The device is embedded flush with skull & charges wirelessly, so you look & feel normal.”
Neuralink works by recording and decoding electrical signals from the brain using more than 2,000 electrodes implanted in regions of the monkey’s motor cortex that coordinate hand and arm movements, the video’s voiceover said.
“Using these data, we calibrate the decoder by mathematically modeling the link between patterns of neural activity and the various joystick movements they produce.”
Co-founded by Musk in 2016, San Francisco-based Neuralink intends to embed wireless brain-computer chips to help cure neurological infirmities like dementia, spinal cord injuries, and Alzheimer’s and link artificial intelligence to humankind.
In August 2020, Musk revealed a pig with a Neuralink chip implant, defining it as “a Fitbit in your skull.”
Musk has a history of bringing collectively distinct specialists to expand technology earlier confined to academic labs, including for electrical vehicles and rockets, through corporations such as SpaceX and Tesla Inc.