Neuralink Corporation is a neurotechnology company developing invasive implantable brain-machine interfaces and was founded by Elon Musk and others. The company’s headquarters is in the Pioneer Building in San Francisco sharing offices with OpenAI. Neuralink was launched in 2016 and was first publicly reported in March 2017.
The Link is the first neural implant that will let you control a computer or mobile device anywhere you go.
Micron-scale threads are inserted into areas of the brain that control movement. Each thread contains many electrodes and connects them to an implant, the Link.
Neurosurgery – The threads on the Link are so fine and flexible that they can’t be inserted by the human hand. Instead, we are building a robotic system that the neurosurgeon can use to reliably and efficiently insert these threads exactly where they need to be.
Neuralink is a device that will first be used to help paraplegics with simple tasks such as using an iPhone and making mouse clicks on a computer — by making no physical movement. … So far, Neuralink prototypes have been tested on rodents and animals (pigs) and apparently even a monkey, according to Musk.
According to the Neuralink site, the question asked is why do electrodes need to be connected directly to the brain? Neural activity can be monitored from outside the head using non-invasive techniques such as EEG. With these techniques, each channel records the summed activity of millions of neurons, which means the details are blurred away. An example of this is experiencing a sports event through a microphone placed outside the stadium. From the roars or groans of the crowd, you can tell when something good or bad happens to the home team, but you’ll have a hard time distinguishing whether they scored or made a great defensive play. And you certainly wouldn’t be able to hear what individual people were saying about the game. The same is true for recording from the brain: recordings made at a distance provide some useful, high-level information, but to access fine-scale information, you need to be close to the source. Here, that means recording action potentials, or voltage “spikes,” from individual neurons. Currently, that can only be done by placing electrodes inside the brain.
Note From the Editor
I am particularly interested in neuroscience technology as I am researching and studying neuroplasticity with the view to cure my brain and my intrusive negative thoughts. I am watching Neuralink evolve to see how it may in the future use no invasive technology to combat issues of depression and anxiety and other mental health illnesses.
I like the idea of being able to download our memories and upload them somewhere else. This would be beneficial for people with severe brain damage. However, uploading this data one would have to use massive amounts of storage space as we as humans have according to Dr. Leaf, “the average person has over 30,000 thoughts a day.” Many of these are a result of uncontrolled thinking. Often grief takes over so much that it turns into depression and anxiety and other representations of ill mental and physical health.
Useful Links & Book Recommendations
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