Elon Musk has set up a new firm to develop Matrix-style ‘neural computers’.
Called Neuralink, it will work on what Musk calls the ‘neural lace’ technology, implanting tiny brain electrodes that may one day upload and download thoughts, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Musk has not made an official announcement, but Neuralink was registered in California as a ‘medical research’ company last July, and he plans on funding the company mostly by himself, a person briefed on the plans told the Journal.
It is unclear what sorts of products Neuralink might create, but people who have had discussions with the company describe a strategy similar to space launch company SpaceX and Tesla, the Journal report said.
In recent weeks, Neuralink has also hired leading academics in the field, the Journal reported
Musk previously hinted at the plans online.
The astonishing revelation came in response to a tweet, asking Musk if he was working on ‘neural lace’ – a way of installing computers into the human brain.
It is not known what the brain chip could be used for, but Musk has previously said that it will be the ‘thing that really matters for humanity to achieve symbiosis with machines.’
‘If you assume any rate of advancement in [artificial intelligence], we will be left behind by a lot,’ he said at a conference last June.
The solution he proposed was a ‘direct cortical interface’—essentially a layer of artificial intelligence inside the brain—that could enable humans to reach higher levels of function.
‘Making progress [on neural lace],’ he tweeted last August, ‘maybe something to announce in a few months.’
In January he tweeted that an announcement might be coming shortly.