Elon Musk unveils Neuralink’s plans for brain-reading ‘threads’ and a robot to insert them

Neuralink of Elon Musk, a secretive company developing brain-machine interfaces, presented some of the first publicly developed technologies. The goal is to eventually implant a paralyzed human device so that you can control your cell phone or computer.

The first big advances are the flexible "thread" interface that does not damage the brain than the material currently used in the brain machine. This thread also created the possibility of transmitting more data, according to a white paper on "Elon Musk & Neuralink." The system says "3,072 electrodes per array can be spread across 96 threads."

The width of the thread is 4 to 6 μm, which is considerably thinner than human hair. Beyond thread development, Neuralink's other major advance is the system that automatically embeds threads.

Musk made a big announcement on Neuralink's research Tuesday night. I simply said it was not exaggerated. "The main reason for doing this presentation is recruiting," Musk said. Max Hodak, president of Neuralink, also came on the stage and admitted that he was not convinced that "this technology was a good idea," but Musk convinced that possibility.

In the future, Neuralink scientists said in an interview with the New York Times that they hope to use a laser beam to pass through the skull rather than drilling it. Initial experiments will be with neuroscientists. According to the report at Stanford University. Musk

During the Q & A process after the release, Musk announced that the rest of his team did not realize: "Monkeys were able to control the computer with their brains."

elon musk unveils neuralinks plans for brain reading threads and a robot to insert them

Elon Musk was the main reason for the presentation on Neuralink recruitment.
A picture of Elizabeth Lopatto / The Verge

"It 's not going to suddenly get a nervous breakdown. "Ultimately he wants to co-exist with artificial intelligence." And in a "benign scenario," humans will be "behind." So he wants to create a technology that can "merge with AI." Later on we added that the brain of value added (vat) and added value is our skull. So the goal is to read nerve spikes in the brain.

Matthew Nagle was the first paralytic patient to undergo a brain transplant called Matthew Nagle. Nagle, who suffered spinal cord injury in 2006, played Pong with his heart only. The required basic action took just four days to master. The New York Times . Since then, paralytic brain implants have moved their robotic arms in the lab, focusing on the subject as part of scientific research. Nagle and others first developed a system called BrainGate at Brown University.

  Embedded Neuralink system in laboratory mice

Neuralink system embedded in experimental mice

"Neuralink has not appeared anywhere, and there is a long history of academic research," Hodak said in a Tuesday presentation. "We are building a giant shoulder with huge senses." However, existing technology does not meet Neuralink's goal of nerve stimulation to read directly in a way that minimizes neuronal involvement.

If the system is functional, it may be a significant advance over the old technology. BrainGate uses the Utah Array, a series of stiff needles that allow up to 128 electrode channels. Not only does it have fewer channel counts than Neuralink, it also means less brain data, but it is more robust than Neuralink's threads. This is a problem for long-term functionality. The skull of the brain changes but the needles of the array are not damaged. The thin polymer used by Neuralink can solve the problem.

1563346563 61 elon musk unveils neuralinks plans for brain reading threads and a robot to insert them

The size of the screw attached to the tip of the finger
Image: Nueralink

Neuralink's technology is, however, more difficult to implant than the Utah Array. It is very flexible. To solve this problem, the company has developed a neurosurgical robot that can insert six threads per minute (192 electrodes) per minute [automatically]according to a white paper. In the picture, it looks like a cross between a microscope and a sewing machine.

In Musk's case, the key problem when interacting with artificial intelligence is actually "bandwidth." It can get information much faster. Rather than pushing with my thumb, I am already connected to the machine, the idea most closely associated with philosopher Andy Clark, so the goal of this system is to enable humans to communicate directly with the machine directly from the brain [19659023] Neuralink's machine for thread insertion ” data-upload-width=”1800″ src=”https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/FqwytDLS7hsJQeqq-Tgsll5WHE8=/0x0:1800×1849/1200×0/filters:focal(0x0:1800×1849):no_upscale()/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_asset/file/18315616/embed_machine.jpg”/>

Neuralink's machine for thread insertion
Image: Ne uralink

] Finally, this paper says that Neuralink has developed a custom chip that can read, organize, and amplify signals in the brain. Now it is possible to transfer data only through a wired connection (using USB-C)

The wireless target is the "N1 sensor," which is designed to transmit data wirelessly inside the human body at Neuralink. It reads fewer neurons than current USB-based prototypes Neuralink tries to insert four of these sensors: three sensors are inserted into the moving area, and three sensors are inserted into the body area, one at a time. "Dr. Hodak said," It will be controlled through the iPhone app. "

I have to go through. "We have not done that yet," said Matthew MacDougall. Neuralink said he hoped Tuesday would be a better surgery, such as "LASIK surgery", with safety being the primary goal and ultimately eliminating the need for general anesthesia. Image: Neuralink

1563346564 970 elon musk unveils neuralinks plans for brain reading threads and a robot to insert them

Image: Neuralink

Image: Neuralink

1563346564 970 elon musk unveils neuralinks plans for brain reading threads and a robot to insert them

Now the company is working in mice to make sure the platform is stable. However, if this technique is successful, it is possible to connect a "high-bandwidth" brain implanted through a robotic surgeon. Using thin, flexible "threads" can record the activity of many neurons.

  The signal is amplified and sent to the computer. 19659035] The signal is amplified and sent to the computer </em></figcaption><cite>  Image: Neuralink </cite></p>
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