Elon Musk wants people to willingly implant electrodes in their brains so they might upload and download thoughts, and he's building a company to make it happen.
This is Musk's latest technological frontier. He's working on an electric car revolution through Tesla and trying to send people to Mars with SpaceX. Through Neuralink, Musk plans to merge humans and machines through a technology called neural lace.
Let's take a look at what we know and don't know about what Musk wants to do to the human brain.
What is neural lace?
Neural lace is a super-thin mesh-like material that can be injected into the skull.
The lace serves as a collection of electrodes that, according to researchers who have injected it into mice, can monitor brain activity, strengthen brain function and even provide treatment for brain disorders. It's an electronic technology that brings humans and machines closer together by perhaps allowing humans to - as The Wall Street Journal recently reported - "upload and download thoughts."
The lab mice, by the way, are reportedly doing just fine.
Read also: Elon Musk is founding another company
How does it work?
Think of it as a tightly coiled bit of mesh stuffed inside a tiny needle. When the needle is inserted into the skull and the mesh is injected, the lace unfurls.
Each needle-full of lace is only millimeters in length. The metal and plastic substance finds its way to the appropriate neurons and monitors that electrical brain activity, theoretically giving you the ability to, for example, translate your thoughts into text via some type of device. Over time, the lace becomes a part of your brain, electronic particles weaving with the biological.
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