Elon Musk working to enable those with brain injuries to communicate

Neuralink is the Tesla founder's latest company

Earlier this week, we heard that Facebook is working to create 'silent software' that will allow users to communicate with computers using brainpower alone. It seems that Facebook is not the only one working on this type of technology.

Tesla founder and serial entrepreneur Elon Musk has revealed his latest company, Neuralink, is working to connect the human brain with a machine interface. The company plans on doing so by creating micron-sized devices. 

Speaking to Wait But Why Musk explained that the product will help those with severe brain injuries caused by stroke or cancer lesion. It is hoped that this product will be on the market in four years. 

“If I were to communicate a concept to you, you would essentially engage in consensual telepathy,” Musk said.

"There are a bunch of concepts in your head that then your brain has to try to compress into this incredibly low data rate called speech or typing. If you have two brain interfaces, you could actually do an uncompressed direct conceptual communication with another person.”

Musk acknowledged that this technology could take about eight to 10 years to become mainstream for people without a disability. This area will have to face rigorous regulatory testing and approval. 

Neuralink is registered in California as a 'medical research' company and Musk says he plans to fund the company mostly by himself. 


Details of Facebook's brain-controlled computers were announced at F8 earlier this week. Posting on his Facebook page on Wednesday, Zuckerberg said,

"Our brains produce enough data to stream four HD movies every second. The problem is that the best way we have to get information out into the world - speech - can only transmit about the same amount of data as a 1980s modem." 

"We're working on a system that will let you type straight from your brain about five times faster than you can type on your phone today." 

Building 8, Facebook's research unit, was launched last year. It conducts long-term work that may lead to hardware products in the future.