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Neuralink chip implanted into brain of monkey who can game with his mind

Elon Musk’s Neuralink has implanted a wireless chip into a “totally happy” monkey’s brain, letting him “play video games using his mind”.

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Musk, who also heads SpaceX and Tesla, founded Neuralink in 2016. The brain-computer interface will initially be used to help people suffering from brain diseases. 

“We’ve already got like a monkey with a wireless implant in their skull and the tiny wires, who can play video games using his mind,” said Musk (via The Independent).

“And he looks totally happy. He does not look like an unhappy monkey,” added Musk. “You can’t even see where the neural implant was put in. He’s not uncomfortable and he doesn’t look weird.”

According to Musk, an inspector with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) described Neuralink’s laboratory as “the nicest monkey facilities”.

“We went the extra mile for the monkeys,” said Musk. “One of the things we’re trying to figure out [is] can we have the monkeys playing mind-Pong with each other?”

Neuralink could change the way we experience the world and how we feel about it, which will potentially have a profound impact on visitor attractions. These chips could offer the ultimate personalised experience, shared directly into your brain.

Musk also said the chips could be used to cheat death. “You could probably save state in the brain. So if you were to die your state could be returned in the form of another human body or a robot body. You could decide if you want to be a robot or a person or whatever.”

He compared this to saving video games, explaining that users could “upload your last state… maybe lose a few memories but mostly be you”.

Neuralink could be launching human trials “later this year”, according to Musk.

The process of having the brain chip implanted will be akin to Lasik laser eye surgery. It will also involve a neurosurgical robot fitting flexible ‘threads’ into the brain, connected to an implantable computer chip.

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Bea Mitchell

A journalist specialising in entertainment and attractions, Bea loves theme parks (mainly Disney) and is particularly interested in things of a gothic, horror or fantasy nature.

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