Neuralink, the launch of the brain implant, founded by SpaceX chief honcho and self-appointed “technoking” Elon Musk, has unveiled a new video of a nine-year-old monkey named “Pager” playing Pong … with his brain.
The three-minute video shows Pager learning to control a computer with his brain activity. Initially, the monkey used a joystick to interact with the computer for a “delicious banana smoothie delivered through a straw.” The narrator states that Pager has two Neuralink devices implanted in his brain. The devices, which Musk calls “Fitbit for your skull,”
As Pager plays through the games, the narrator explains that Neuralink devices in his brain read his brain activity and that activity is decoded by a computer. When the team turned off the joystick, Pager continued to play the game – and the brain implant allowed him to play “MindPong,” as Neuralink called it.
The full video is below.
Musk tweeted Thursday that the first product since the launch would allow “someone with paralysis to use a smartphone with their mind faster than someone who uses their thumbs.”
This is a future that still looks far away.
“MindPong is an initial demonstration of the potential of N1 Link,” the company said in a statement. “It’s important to remember, though, that this is a small part of what our device is designed to achieve.”
Neuralink has been relatively quiet since its inception in 2016. In the last two years of launchdetails his momentum forward. The Neuralink device debuted in 2019 and seems to have made steady progress the following year when pig implants were discovered
The briefings also functioned as recruits, with Musk asking people to connect and join. A similar call was posted at the end of the Neuralink monkey video. But information is still scarce: Musk and Neuralink published a scientific article in the Journal of Medical Internet Research in October 2019.
Musk, annoying Neuralink, connected the monkey’s brain to play video games. “We have a monkey with a wireless implant in its skull that can play video games using its mind,” he said. We see this in action now, but we still don’t have much scientific evidence here.
In a simultaneous press release on the Neuralink website, the company said that “our first goal is to give back to people with paralysis their digital freedom: to communicate more easily through text, to follow their curiosity online, to express their creativity through photography and art and, yes, play video games. “
It’s been a strange few days for Neuralink. Earlier this week, Neuralink President and Co-Founder Max Hodak tweeted about Jurassic Park, which. Monkeys playing pong isn’t exactly dino DNA, but … maybe it’s even more impressive? Who am I to say?