Elon Musk has reason to celebrate: his start-up Neuralink has just received the green light from American health authorities to test connected brain implants on humans whose objective is to allow humanity to achieve ” a symbiosis with artificial intelligence ».
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The start-up Neuralink, one of the companies ofElon MuskElon Musk, announced this Thursday, May 25 on Twitter that it had received approval from the American health authorities to test its connected brain implants on humans. ” This is an important first step that will one day allow our technology to help many people “said the Californian company, specifying that” recruitments for clinical testsclinical tests are not open yet ».
Neuralink designs devices connected to implantimplant in the brainbrain to communicate with the computerscomputers directly by thought. They must first be used to help people who are paralyzed or suffering from neurological diseasesneurological diseases. The start-up then wants to make these implantsimplants secure and reliable enough to fall under the elective surgeryelective surgery (of comfort) — people could then spend a few thousand dollars to equip their brains with computing power. For Elon Musk, these chips must allow humanity to arrive at a ” symbiosis withartificial intelligenceartificial intelligence (IA),” in his 2020 words, delivered at the conference annualannual of the company.
The billionaire fears that AI systems will overtake humans and one day take control. In March, he founded X.AI, a new AI company, likely to compete with OpenAI, the company that designed ChatGPTChatGPTa successful generative AI program capable of interacting with humans and producing all kinds of text on demand.
Work faster to outpace the competition
« We are now confident Neuralink’s device is ready for humans, so timing depends on FDA approval process “, the American drug agency, he had indicated at the end of November on Twitter, a month after having bought the social network. There FDAFDA did not immediately respond to a request from AFP.
The boss of TeslaTesla et SpaceXSpaceX (space exploration) is used to making risky predictions, particularly about the range of Tesla electric cars. In July 2019, he estimated that Neuralink could perform its first tests on individuals in 2020.
So far, the prototypes the size of a small coin have been implanted in the skullskull of animals. Several monkeys are thus capable of “playing” video games or “typing” words on a screen, simply by following eyeseyes the movementmovement of the cursor on the screen.
At the end of November, the start-up also took stock of its latest advances in the design of a robot-surgeon and the development of other implants to be installed in the spinal cordspinal cord or eyes, to restore mobility or vision. In 2022, Elon Musk urged Neuralink employees to work faster. ” We’ll all be dead before anything useful happens he told them during a meeting last year, according to the Bloomberg news agency.
Other companies are working on controlling computers by thought, such as Synchron, which announced in July 2022 that it had implanted the first brain-machine interface in the United States. ” We are building technology that can directly broadcast the thoughts of people who have lost the ability to move or speak due to illness or injury “Explains Thomas Oxley, the founder and boss of this start-up, in a video on his website.
Several patients are testing the implant, which has been inserted into blood vessels, so they can compose emails or go to InternetInternet through their eyes and their brains.