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Elon Musk says his AI-brain-chip company might be putting implants in humans within a year

Lisa Eadicicco , Business Insider US
 May 08, 2020, 09:05 AM
Elon Musk
Brendan Smialowski / AFP via Getty Images
  • Elon Musk says the brain implant his company Neuralink is working on could potentially be ready to be put inside a patient within a year.
  • Musk made similar claims in 2019, saying that he hoped to have an implant in a patient by the end of 2020.
  • Neuralink's chip would be implanted directly into the skull so that it could interface with parts of the human brain.
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Neuralink, the AI-brain-chip company spearheaded by Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, could be ready to put a version of its implant in a person "within a year," Musk said when recently speaking on Joe Rogan's podcast.

Neuralink, which was founded in 2016, is Musk's neural technology company that's developing an implant designed to interface directly with the human brain. The initial goal of the implant, says Musk, is to use it as a means to treat brain injury and trauma.

"There's still a lot of work to do," Musk said when speaking with Rogan. "So when I say, you know, we've probably got a shot at putting it in a person, you know, within a year. I think, that's exactly what I mean, I think we have a chance of putting input in one end, having them be healthy, and restoring some functionality that they've lost."

The chip could potentially be used to restore eyesight, hearing, and limb movement in addition to addressing diseases that affect the brain, Musk claims. The device would be implanted directly into the skull to enable electrode threads to interface with certain areas of the brain, according to Musk.

"It could, in principle, fix anything that's wrong with the brain," Musk said.

It's not the first time Musk has made such claims. Back in July 2019, Musk said that he hoped to have an implant in a human patient by the end of next year.

But that's just the early ambitions Musk has in store for Neuralink. In the long term, he hopes to develop a device that could enable "symbiosis" between humans and AI.

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