ELON MUSK WANTS to merge the computer with the human brain, build a “neural lace,” create a “direct cortical interface,” whatever that might look like. In recent months, the founder of Tesla, SpaceX, and OpenAI has repeatedly hinted at these ambitions, and then, earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal reported that Musk has now launched a company called Neuralink that aims to implant tiny electrodes in the brain “that may one day upload and download thoughts.”
And he’s not the only one. Bryan Johnson, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who previously sold a startup to PayPal for $800 million, is now building a company called Kernel, pledging to fund the operation with $100 million of his own money. He says the company aims to build a new breed of “neural tools” in hardware and software.