The first patient with the Neuralink chip in the brain plays chess with his mind: the video

After implanting a chip in the brain of the first human patient on January 28, Elon Musk's Neuralink company broadcast a live video on first public presentation of the use of Neuralink by a human. In the video, you can actually see it Noland Arbaugh – the 29-year-old patient who received the implant Telepathy chipquadriplegic after a diving accident 8 years ago – use a computer to play chess using thebrain-computer interface (BCI) which uses neural signals to control other external devices.

In the video, Arbaugh said that this technology has already changed his life. Although this new mode of interaction was not easy to use at firstnow he has enough mastery of it to use it – as he stated in the video – even for eight hours straight playing Civilization VIone of his favorite video game titles and which he had given up playing due to his disability.

What the first Neuralink patient video shows

In the video of 9 minutes broadcast on X, the young quadriplegic patient interviewed by a Neuralink engineer, he told the tragic story that led him to live with such a significant disability.

After this brief presentation, the Neuralink engineer who made the video framed Arbaugh to show the public what he was doing on the computer and it is at this point that he is seen intent on move the mouse pointer to move the pieces on the board and to stop the music playing in the background from the computer speakers.

How is it possible to move the mouse with your mind

Watching the video, a more than legitimate question arises: How is it possible to move the mouse with your mind? Credit goes to the Neuralink chip implanted in Arbaugh's skull which, through some electrodes brought into contact with brain tissue, it is capable of detect brain activation patternsassociate them with specific actions and finally translate them into appropriate electrical signals.

These impulses are then sent to external devices (for example the computer mouse), which at this point are able to read them to perform various types of operations, such as moving the pieces on a virtual chessboard or putting a music player to sleep. .

Criticism of Neuralink for lack of transparency

A striking aspect of Neuralink's activity, beyond the technology and its possibilities, is represented by the particular methods of communication by the company. Basically, everything we know about the developments of the trial comes from communications and announcements via social media. To date we have no information on some clinical details of the trial, such as which ones medical parameters are measured or what criteria are used to monitor progress and results. For these reasons, part of the scientific community has criticized Neuralink for not having made available studies that allow an independent evaluation. These criticisms add to those, dating back to last year, of alleged violation of theAnimal Welfare Act during the animal testing phase of the Neuralink chips.

However, let us remember that the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has not approved brain-computer interfaces for healthcare use, which therefore currently remain devices that can only be used for experimental purposes.