Tech mogul Elon Musk has implanted a coin-sized computer-chip in the brain of a pig with an ambitious plan to cure for paralysis or dementia. The chip has been planted in the pig called Gertrude that will pave the way to create a working brain-to-machine interface. The billionaire entrepreneur said that the chip will be just like a Fitbit in ‘your skull with tiny wires.’ This has been done by 49-year-old’s ‘brain tech’ start-up Neuralink. Musk invested around USD 100 million in the firm with the target of developing a digital link between the brain and a computer. According to the billionaire, the chip could be used in the future to help cure conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, dementia, and spinal cord injuries.
Gertrude was one of three pigs that took part in a webcast demo. It took her some time to get going but her brain activity started to appear on computer tracking her brain once she started to eat and sniffed straw. According to the Neuralink, the chip was fitted in the skull behind the ear through a small hole. Pointing to the pig, Musk said that the chip can overwrite malfunctioning brain cells. He also emphasized that the surgery to implant the chip will be bloodless as the sensor will not touch any blood vessels. Musk has already applied for permission so that he can start implanting it in humans. Once approved, the billionaire is planning to sell the ‘Link’ for around £800.
He believes that the implant will allow humans to control devices like computers and mobile phones simply through brain signals. “From hearing loss to blindness and memory loss, you can solve everything. Moreover, one could summon his or her self-driving by simply thinking about it,” he said. The ‘Link’ will have to be charged inductively just like an Apple Watch charger. In the future it will even help to save and replay memories. However, the critics are not convinced and said they want to 100 per cent human.