Elon Musk just unveiled a chip (Link VO.9) that would allow humans to control devices with their brains. As he introduced Gertrude, a pig that had the chip implanted in her brain two months
ago, a graph showed her brain waves, which fired when her brain communicated with her snout while eating. (For those PETA supporters out there, Musk insists that Gertrude is a healthy,
happy pig, indistinguishable from a normal pig.)
The company, NeuraLink, was founded by Musk in 2016 with the aim to explore and research connecting human brains to computer technology. Although this device could eventually help cure people with conditions like memory loss, hearing loss, paralysis, blindness, brain damage, depression, and anxiety, a more questionable use exists. Link VO.9 would be able to connect to and communicate with a person’s mobile phone.
And the Tesla czar is not the only one dabbling in this space. It has been reported that Facebook is developing a chip that would enable a person to ‘think’ a text message into existence.
Although the process is straightforward – getting a chip put into your brain would involve a one-hour out-patient procedure performed by a robot without general anesthesia – the question remains, do we really want to go here? Yes, a device that can help people with specific health conditions would be valuable. But where do we draw the line? What is the benefit of thinking a
text message into existence or turning on the oven with our thoughts? Only you can decide.
JILL, WHAT CAN I DO? For once, there is no action item. I’m sharing this content with you to keep you in the know, as there is no doubt that brain chips will impact the future of work. Wait, I take that back. There are a few things you can do: pray for Gertrude and participate in next week’s poll where I’ll ask your thoughts about brain chips. To the future…