Elon Musk Announces Human Controls Computer Mouse With Brain

In a groundbreaking development, Elon Musk revealed that Neuralink’s first human trial participant can now manipulate a computer mouse solely with their mind, marking a significant stride in the realm of brain-computer interfaces.

During a conversation at an X Spaces event on Monday night, Musk expressed optimism about the progress, stating, “Progress is good, the patient seems to have made a full recovery … and can control the mouse, move the mouse around the screen just by thinking.”

Neuralink, Musk’s brain chip startup, had recently completed its maiden implantation surgery on a human subject after obtaining approval to assess the safety and efficacy of its chip implant and surgical tools.

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The implanted chip, situated in the part of the brain governing movement intentions, records and transmits brain signals to an app, enabling individuals to control a computer cursor or keyboard using their thoughts alone.

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“We’re trying to get as many button presses as possible from thinking, so that’s what we’re currently working on is — can we get left mouse, right mouse, mouse down, mouse up,” explained Musk.

The ultimate aim of Neuralink is to bridge the gap between human brains and computers, empowering paralyzed individuals to operate smartphones or computers, or even aiding blind individuals in regaining sight.

However, details surrounding the trial remain scarce, and the company has yet to provide evidence of the operation’s outcomes, leaving the scientific community awaiting substantiation of the implant’s efficacy.

While Neuralink’s ambition holds promise, other firms in the field, such as Synchron, have made notable strides. Synchron reported earlier this year that individuals with severe paralysis could use their brain implant device for routine digital activities like texting and emailing.

Despite Neuralink’s progress, the company has faced scrutiny, particularly following the death of a monkey during a Pong-playing experiment in 2022. Nevertheless, Neuralink received FDA clearance for human clinical trials last year, embarking on its “PRIME Study” to evaluate the safety and functionality of its implant and surgical robot.

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While Musk envisions a future where individuals communicate faster than ever imagined, widespread access to this transformative technology hinges on regulatory approval and further advancements in research.

In the quest to merge human cognition with computer technology, Neuralink’s recent achievement signals a promising step forward, though the journey to mainstream accessibility remains an ongoing endeavor.

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