Combining Man and Machine

Firdavs Mamatmurodov, Reporter

Elon Musk’s new project Neuralink shocked the world when it was announced in March 27, 2017. Its objective: to combine man and machine. Neutalink’s plan is to develop a brain-machine interface that can combine people with Artificial Intelligence (AI) by surgically implanting chips into our brains. 

Elon Musk is a multibillionaire who has revolutionized the banking, automotive, rocket, and energy industries in a little over a decade. Elon Musk is known to be a tech genius, and his latest venture with Neuralink will no doubt boost his status. Neuralink is Elon Musk’s most most exciting endeavor, with the goal of fusing human intelligence with AI, to bring humanity to a higher level of cognitive reasoning. Without this technology, Elon Musk argues that humanity will not be able to keep up with advances in AI.  He claims,”AI is something that is risky at the civilization level, not merely at the individual risk level, and that’s why it demands a lot of safety research.”

The N1, a 4mm-square chip, is implanted into the skull. Attached to the chip are wires thinner than a human hair, which reach out into the brain. These threads are located close to critical parts of the brain and are capable of detecting messages as they’re relayed between neurons, recording each impulse and stimulating their own. Neuralink says the N1 is able to connect with 1,000 extraordinary brain cells, and that a patient would possibly have as many as 10 N1 chips implanted. The chips are wirelessly connected to a wearable device that loops across the user’s ear, this includes a Bluetooth radio and a battery. Neuralink claims the first chips will be implanted by conventional neurosurgery, but the devices will ultimately be implanted safely and almost painlessly, through small incisions by a robotic surgeon.