Elon Musk Claims That Mysterious Brain Invention Could Cure Depression
It's a computer chip that interacts with the brain, and it's called Neuralink.
The company was started by Musk in 2016, and very little is known about what it actually does or how it works. I mean, do we want some electronic device poking around inside our head?
Well, if it could cure addiction and depression, maybe there is a justification for it. It still sounds weird though, doesn't it?
After the company was started up, it received $158 million (£125 million) in investment and last year announced that it had devised a 'sewing machine like' device that can connect the human brain directly to a computer.
It's all very science fiction.
So, Musk has said there will be more details about Neuralink on 28 August, but Twitter user Pranay Pathole decided to put a question to the South African about the things it can do, or will be able to do in future.
Pathole asked: "Can Neuralink be used to retrain the part of the brain which is responsible for causing addiction or depression? It'd be great if Neuralink can be used for something like addiction/depression."
Musk - who recently became the seventh richest man in the world - responded: "For sure. This is both great and terrifying. Everything we've ever sensed or thought has been electrical signals.
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"They early universe was just a soup of quarks and leptons. How did a very small piece of the universe start to think of itself as sentient?"
In the shorter term, it seems as if the plan for Neuralink is to try to treat brain illnesses such as Parkinson's disease, but in future it's possible the capabilities could be so much greater, even potentially allowing humans to compete with artificial intelligence.
They've already started testing the system out on animals, and hope that they'll be able to begin trialing it on humans at some point later in the year.
Perhaps a little bit more scary is Musk's statements about using Neuralink to make humans symbiotic with AI and remove the need for physical language anymore.
In May, he told Joe Rogan: "You wouldn't need to talk.
"You would be able to communicate very quickly and with far more precision."
Alright, but there's a lot of stuff that pops into our heads that we don't say out loud, Elon.
We'll have to see what he comes up with on 28 August.
Featured Image Credit: Neuralink