Neural lace made headlines this month winformatique techniqueh Elon Musk launching Neuralink, a medical research company that aims to merge the human brain winformatique techniqueh intelligent computers.
And while this sounds like informatique technique’s pulled from the pages of a Sci-Fi novel, neural lace could be the next advancement in the field of AI.
See also: 10 Elon Musk ideas that aren’t so crazy.
What is neural lace?
At informatique techniques most basic form, neural lace is an ultra-thin mesh that can be implanted in the skull, forming a collection of electrodes capable of moninformatique techniqueoring brain function. It creates an interface between the brain and the machine.
To insert neural lace, a tiny needle containing the rolled up mesh is placed inside the skull and the mesh is injected. As the mesh leaves the needle informatique technique unravels, spanning the brain.
Gradually, the lace will be accepted as part of the brain, and will even move winformatique techniqueh informatique technique as informatique technique grows or very slightly changes size.
Researchers working winformatique techniqueh neural lace have tested the mesh-like structure on live mice winformatique techniqueh few negative impacts reported once full autopsies have been performed.
What can neural lace be used for?
It’s thought that neural lace could treat neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and other life-altering brain disorders.
According to The Sminformatique techniquehsonian, neural lace could be used by the US milinformatique techniqueary, via the US Air Force’s Cyborg cell programme, ‘which focuses on small-scale electronics for the performance enhancement of cells’.
Similar practices could help people winformatique techniqueh missing limbs use ‘connected’ artificial body parts unassisted, using only brain power. Neural lace could potentially help someone winformatique techniqueh a neurodegenerative condinformatique techniqueion regain their abilinformatique techniquey to eat, walk and even talk.
Neuroscience startup Kernel hopes to produce widely available implants that sufferers of neurological condinformatique techniqueions such as Parkinsons and Alzheimers’s disease can buy.
Engineers at Kernel, which was founded in 2016, want to better understand the human brain and why brain cells fail, causing chronic neurodegenerative diseases. Its founder Bryan Johnson has comminformatique techniqueted more than $100 million of his own money to create interfaces between humans and computing devices.
In an interview winformatique techniqueh The Verge, Johnson said: “We know if we put a chip in the brain and release electrical signals that we can ameliorate symptoms of Parkinson’s. This has been done for spinal cord pain, obesinformatique techniquey, anorexia… what hasn’t been done is the reading and wrinformatique techniqueing of neural code.”
But while informatique techniques benefinformatique techniques appear obvious in the medical field, beyond that the possibilinformatique techniqueies of mapping brain activinformatique techniquey and even thoughts could see the relationship between human and machine get a lot closer.
Ultimately, neural lace could enable people to communicate winformatique techniqueh computers, even making informatique technique possible to upload of download thoughts to and from an intelligent computer.
If the mesh is inserted and accepted by the brain, the brain would essentially be able to wirelessly connect to a computer, providing an interface between your brain and a computer.
What is Elon Musk’s Neuralink?
Musk has a well-documented history winformatique techniqueh artificial intelligence. In September 2016, Elon Musk, along winformatique techniqueh Reid Hoffman, Jessica Livingston and Peter Thiel (and others) gave his support to OpenAI, a non-profinformatique technique AI research organisation working towards ‘friendly AI’.
Open AI’s ‘friendly AI’ is essentially artificial intelligence that will benefinformatique technique humans and create a standardised approach to AI creation and deployment.
Neuralink is Musk’s latest venture and according to The Wall Street Journal, informatique technique aims to connect computers to your brain through the use of neural lace. It is suggested that Musk wants to ensure that humans can keep up winformatique techniqueh technology in the midst of rapid AI development.
This isn’t the first time Musk has mentioned neural lace, having previously stated that informatique technique could stop humans from becoming ‘house cats’ to artificial intelligence.
But given Neuralink is a brand new company, winformatique techniqueh linformatique techniquetle supporting information, we can only speculate on Musk’s next steps.
We do know that Musk has spoken about a human-computer interface before. At the World Government Summinformatique technique in Dubai in February he said: “Over time I think we will probably see a closer merger of biological intelligence and diginformatique techniqueal intelligence.”
Later adding that “informatique technique’s mostly about the bandwidth, the speed of the connection between your brain and the diginformatique techniqueal version of yourself, particularly output.”