Musk’s Neuralink shows first brain-chip patient playing online chess

Musk's Neuralink shows first brain-chip patient playing online chess

Elon Musk’s brain-chip startup, Neuralink, marked a milestone by livestreaming its first patient, Noland Arbaugh, using a chip implanted in his brain to play online chess. Arbaugh, paralyzed below the shoulder after a diving accident, controlled a computer cursor using his thoughts, demonstrating the potential of the Neuralink device to enable individuals to interact with computers solely through brain signals.

Arbaugh, who received the implant in January, expressed his gratitude for the newfound ability to play games like Civilization VI for hours, a feat he thought was beyond reach before Neuralink. Despite acknowledging imperfections and ongoing challenges with the technology, Arbaugh emphasized its transformative impact on his life.

However, Kip Ludwig, former program director for neural engineering at the US National Institutes of Health, cautioned that Neuralink’s demonstration was still in the early stages, with much learning and refinement required to optimize control capabilities post-implantation.

Nevertheless, Ludwig acknowledged the positive development for the patient, underscoring the significance of interfacing with a computer in ways previously impossible. Despite recent reports of FDA inspection findings highlighting concerns with record-keeping and quality controls for animal experiments at Neuralink, the demonstration signifies a promising step forward in the field of brain-computer interface technology.