Musk has been a proponent of a time where artificial intelligence will outstrip human intelligence and has floated the idea of a computer-brain combination technology for several years.
The neural lace involves implanting electrodes in the brain so people could upload or download their thoughts to or from a computer. The product could allow humans to achieve higher levels of cognitive functionality, improve memory and create a ‘symbiosis’ by easing the conversation between man and future machines.
The first products produced by Neuralink, which was registered as a medical research company in California last July, could involve using implants to treat disorders like epilepsy or depression. Work has already been made in this area with chips implanted into patients’ heads that have shown to ease symptoms of spinal cord pain, obesity and anorexia.
However, what Musk proposes is something beyond merely bypassing neurological defects. Neural lace could transform humans into an advanced piece of interactive software. The speed of our interactions with technology would increase to an unprecedented rate.
The neural lace concept requires a lot more research into both the human brain and developing technologies to operate on or in it. But Musk predicts that the technology will be available in less than a decade.