Brain-computer interface | Elon Musk's Neuralink-"It's like a Fitbit in your skull with tiny wires".
How does the human brain work?
The human brain consists of billions of nerve cells that are arranged in a defined pattern to communicate with each other through electrical signals.
Neurons consist of a cell body, dendrites, and an axon. When neurons receive or send messages, they transmit electrical impulses along their axons.
Brain-computer interface :
Brain-computer interface(BCI) is a technology by which we can read the electric signals produced by several neurons and also can input several designed electrical pulses so as to instructor simulate the brain as per the requirement.
BCI detects the change in the voltage of electrical impulse generated every time brain works and decodes the signal as well as can encode other information we want to write in the brain or simulate the brain with whatever we want like showing an image to a blind person and making a deaf person hear something by converting the vocal information into electrical signals
Earlier BCI was achieved by placing a receiver outside the skull to receive the electrical pulses generated by the human brain. But, the skull blocks the signals, and thus to receive high-resolution signals now electrodes are directly implanted into the skull.
Elon Musk's Neuralink:
Elon Musk recently showed a live demonstration of an upgrade in one of his startup Neuralink's technology.
A pig,s brain was implanted with a small computer called Neuralink and it can fluidly detect and read all the brain functioning and body actions as the pig was walking and sniffing around simultaneously.
He also demonstrated that a person can have more than one implants, like one in the brain and others on the place where he is having a spinal injury and also the implant can be completely removed with the same original person back.
Musk also demonstrated an advanced robot capable enough to implant the Neuralink and connect the electrodes to the neurons under the skull and can perform complete surgery automatically.
The electrodes are connected to the brain cells read and write the electronic signals and then the computer coin-sized chip is wirelessly connected to an external device to decode and encode the information.
Watch the complete official live demonstration of Neuralink
Musk claims that it can be used in the future to:
Neuralink has a medical focus to start and can be implanted in the brain to help people dealing with brain and spinal cord injuries like paraplegics (inability to move or sense because of spinal cord injury).
Also, it can be further used in the future to achieve Conceptual telepathy (two people communicating electronically by just thinking and imagination instead of writing and saying their thoughts.
Also on the bigger part Musk claimed that it can be used in storing the human memory and replaying it whenever you want just like writing all your memories in an external hard drive.
Advancement in technology can cure critical brain injury as well as in future, BCI can be used to improve the productivity of humans in day to day tasks.