Elon Musk, the boss of Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) and SpaceX has decided to take a break from electric cars, rocket ships, and building tunnels to solve urban congestion problems. He is instead focusing on software for a change. The billionaire businessman and futurist have launched a startup company called Neuralink, which wants to merge the human brain and computers, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Benefits of Merging the Brain With Computers
Musk says this is inevitable, as one day we have to merge our brains with machines or computers because that is the only way we can be efficient enough to deal with the ever-improving artificial intelligence. He says, by merging our brains with computers, we will also be able to exponentially improve our brains, and we will also be able to communicate with machines directly.
The first steps of this are being taken now.
Neuralink is pursuing what Musk calls the “neural lace” technology. In this, small electrodes will be implanted in the brain, which will allow thoughts to be uploaded and downloaded. However, critics have pointed out that there are both ethical as well as security issues involved. For instance, through these electrodes people can be manipulated by controlling or implanting thoughts.
The brain-mapping technology we have now allows us to send thought controls to machines, like for instance, manipulating a prosthetic limb. But a two-way upgradeable human/machine brain is still something probably years into the future.
Musk Acknowledges the Neuralink Startup on Twitter
Musk is yet to make an official announcement of his new startup. However, he has acknowledged this on Twitter after the report came out in the Wall Street Journal. Neuralink was registered last July in California as a “medical research” company. As of now, he plans to self-fund this new venture.
Musk has also spoken quite often about merging human beings with machines and has frequently supported this idea as well. Only last month, while attending a summit in Dubai, he said, “Over time I think we will probably see a closer merger of biological intelligence and digital intelligence”.
It is unclear, though, what types of products this new business will come up with. However, those who have had talks with the company already, according to the Wall Street Journal, Neuralink’s strategy will be similar to Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) and his space launch business SpaceX.