We can all agree that Elon Musk has become successful because of his ability to think outside of the box. From founding Paypal to the spacecraft company SpaceX, the tech entrepreneur is always creating an innovative product or service. And his latest venture is no exception.
It seems that Elon is now shifting gears into the world of brain-computer interface. And while he is known for taking an unorthodox approach with his projects, using a monkey brain in his Neuralink Corp startup research has left many people a bit confused. Here’s everything we know.
So, what's the deal with Elon Musk using a monkey's brain in his latest startup?
There's no denying that there are many methods one can use to test different programs. And while computers or people are used to gather intel, Elon has taken a different approach by using a monkey.
According to Bloomberg, Elon is using a monkey with wires going into its brain to play video games. The goal is to see how the animal responds to further research for his new startup.
While the idea is definitely on the unique side, the publication shares that Elon wants to use the brain-linking technology to address brain and spinal injuries and making up people’s lost capacity with an implanted chip. "There are primitive versions of this device with wires sticking out of your head, but it’s like a Fitbit in your skull with tiny wires that go into your brain," he shares.
Many people are not fond of Elon Musk using monkeys in research.
At first thought, it's easy to think that the idea of using monkey for research is cool. However, if you're a bonafide animal lover or activist, this research method may immediately give you pause. After all, there is no way to determine if the monkey will suffer any long-term damage from this research.
But Elon shared with the publication that the monkey is doing well.
“We have a monkey with a wireless implant in their skull with tiny wires who can play video games with his mind,” he tells Clubhouse listeners. “You can’t see where the implant is and he’s a happy monkey. We have the nicest monkey facilities in the world. We want them to play mind-Pong with each other.”
Still, the news has rubbed many people the wrong way, with many social media slamming the tech entrepreneur online. Some people believe that it's animal cruelty and simply wrong for him to do, while others are supportive.
"It's not an unhappy monkey” Elon Musk— Sven Henrich (@NorthmanTrader) February 1, 2021
What garbage. It’s a captive held animal in a cage which had brain surgery performed on it. If it had free will it wouldn’t have consented.
Elon didn’t volunteer either.
Ethics can be debated but don’t pretend the monkey is happy. https://t.co/Udell1Nx09
Elon Musk on Clubhouse: “Yeah we got a monkey with a chip in its brain playing video games, he’s a happy monkey” 🤯— MissRoshni (@MissRoshni) February 1, 2021
Elon Musk just said they have a monkey with a microchip in his head that allows him to play video games with his brain.... I am deeply frightened. Exited right out that room, my brain will be in too many places if I listen to him talk— SamanthaJuels (@samantha_juels) February 1, 2021
Despite all of the criticisms of his research, there are many people who see nothing wrong with his innovative research plan. And while he has not spoken out in defense of his new venture and methods, it's safe to say that he doesn't plan on pulling the plug anytime soon.
Elon has never been afraid to step outside of the norm and using a wired up monkey is just another way for him to boost more interest in his research. However, we wouldn't be surprised if animal rights groups call for a cessation.