Chief Executive Officer of SpaceX and Tesla and co-founder of PayPal Elon Musk has announced that his secretive neurotechnology company, Neuralink, will start implanting devices into people’s brains by the end of next year.
According to The New York Times, Elon Musk has invested 100 million dollar in Neuralink and he hoped it to achieve “symbiosis with artificial intelligence.”
The investor and engineer said the system developed by his startup would allow implantation of the tiny chip, a brain-machine interface, into the minds of humans.
The chip would stimulate neurons with the help of tiny threads of electrodes. Musk said the threads would be inserted into the brain through a procedure as safe and painless as LASIK eye surgery.
“We hope to have this aspirationally in a human patient before the end of next year,” Musk said at a livestream press conference on Tuesday, adding that it was not like a major operation, rather “it is kind of equivalent to a LASIK-type of thing”.
Elon Musk believes that the durable wireless system could be helpful in treating brain disorders like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, and could “preserve and enhance” brain functions.
However, some experts believe that such “unrealistic” invention was possible in a science fiction only. A physician has even expressed apprehension that this could damage brain.
Thomas Stieglitz of the Department of Biomedical Microtechnology, University of Freiburg, told Business Insider, “Unless all this is clear, it’s simply not possible to upload knowledge somewhere else then upload it back into the brain. While it might make for great science fiction, in reality it’s just hokum.”