What’s the worst that could happen?
Futurist Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla (TSLA) and SpaceX, is implementing his grand vision to microchip the human brain through his Neuralink devices that could enable telepathy through the use of Bluetooth technology.
Musk hosted a YouTube livestream on Tuesday where he and a group of scientists explained his proposal to insert tiny microchips into the brain that would be connected to 1,000 wires approximately one-tenth the width of a single human hair. This would theoretically enable the human brain to synchronize with computer devices.
“If you’re going to stick something in a brain, you want it not to be large,” Musk said.
A chipped individual would wear a small computerized device over their ear to enable the Neuralink connection. The microchip would also have a USB-C port and could be connected to a smartphone through Bluetooth technology.
Musk plays up the possible revolutionary uses for such a device like combating memory loss in quadriplegics, cancer patients, stroke victims, or others with serious brain function defects. As many of 10 of these devices can be placed into one individual’s brain.
In order to implant the device, a robot will drill a hole into an individual’s head which will be plugged by the chip.
“The interface to the chip is wireless, so you have no wires poking out of your head. That’s very important,” Musk said.
Critics point to possible ways that Musk’s grand vision could go horribly wrong.
“The idea of entrusting big enterprise with our brain data should create a certain level discomfort for society,” said Daniel Newman, principal analyst at Futurum Research, who is skeptical of Musk’s ambitious project.
“There is no evidence that we should trust or be comfortable with moving in this direction,” he added.
“Gathering data from raw brain activity could put people in great risk, and could be used to influence, manipulate and exploit them,” said Frederike Kaltheuner, who monitors corporate exploitation for Privacy International, to CNN Business.
“Who has access to this data? Is this data shared with third parties? People need to be in full control over their data,” she added.
Musk intends to start human trials on his Neuralink device by the end of 2020 and claims that his intentions are to use artificial intelligence (AI) in a way that will benefit mankind. He has warned of the potential harms of AI in the past.
“With artificial intelligence, we are summoning the demon,” Musk said in 2014.
“In all those stories where there’s the guy with the pentagram and the holy water, it’s like yeah he’s sure he can control the demon,” he added. “Didn’t work out.”
By proposing for microchips to be implanted into human brains, he may be channeling the demon in ways that literally fulfill Biblical prophecies from the Book of Revelation.
The microchipping of individuals is already taking place in the United States and throughout the world. The fake news media is presenting the movement toward digital totalitarianism as trendy and innovative.
Musk may have noble goals for how he intends to use AI and microchips for the betterment of mankind, but the road to Hell is often paved with good intentions.