Apr 24, 2017 08:36 AM EDT
Last month, Elon Musk confirmed his new venture with his Neuralink project, which aims to create implantable brain chips. In October 2014, Musk first opened up about artificial intelligence and how he thinks it could be the greatest existential threat.
Neuralink is based in San Francisco and is currently working on brain-machine interfaces in the hopes of harnessing AI in a way that will benefit society. Musk's team consists of neurosurgeons with PhDs in electrical engineering and computer science, tech designers, professors and a team of researchers from different universities. Flip Sabes, a UC San Francisco professor and Tim Gardner, associate professor of biology at Boston University who has worked on implanting brain-machine interfaces in birds, both left their tenured positions to join the team
The Los Angeles Times reported that Neuralink wants to create a whole-brain interface or a wizard hat for the brain. Musk said that Neuralink plans to bring the device to market in about four years.
CNN reported that in a recent interview with Wait But Why, Musk explained his plan for the Neuralink project. Musk is currently the CEO of Neuralink, Teslan and SpaceX. The team plans to develop a device that can be implanted in the brain to help people with brain injuries such as strokes and repair cancer lesions.
The interface aims to give the brain the ability to connect wirelessly with the cloud. The idea may be a little creepy but Musk said the level of technology that is available today already makes people a cyborg and that humans have been a completely different creature 20 years ago. He added that people are already merged with their phones and laptops.
Musk also mentioned that the implant is an attempt to fight potentially dangerous applications of artificial intelligence. Musk believes that brain-machine interface devices could be used by people without medical needs in the next 8 to 10 years. However, it may depend heavily on regulatory approval timing and how well the devices would work on people with disabilities, he added.
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