Elon Musk has previously discussed the possibilities of using a neural lace on humans, but it looks like the future has come at last. He described the technology as a brain computer system that would link human brains to a computer interface, and would likely prevent humans from being "house cats" to artificial intelligence.
In the Vox Media's Code Conference last year, Musk described how humans are basically cyborgs already, due to the vast information on ourselves that we store through social media, emails and the cloud. He explains that this capability alone is powerful, but not powerful enough with the fast developments of artificial intelligence.
Musk believes that human limitation lies in the vast difference in input and output. Humans are already equipped with a powerful machine capable of vast intake and storage of data- the brain. However, it is the output of data lags significantly behind the input rates of our brains. The example Musk gives is the rate of information output that we generate by typing on our mobiles using two thumbs which he finds ridiculously slow. And it is, especially if you compare it to the amount of information that the human brain is capable of processing. So what's the solution?
The neural lace is a mesh-like device that grows with the human brain. The device is a thin and supple material that will act as a sort of wireless electronic device that would allow humans to communicate with a computer directly without having to go through a physical medium. The idea behind the technology is to essentially balance out or even remove the I/O limitation, via a symbiotic relationship between man and machine.
The A.I. Factor
Musk has always been open about his apprehensions about the development of A.I., so much so that in 2015, he invested $10 million in OpenAI, a non-profit organization with the goal of ensuring that advancements in intelligence will benefit humanity as a whole. The neural lace is just one of Musk's ways of making sure that humans will not be completely inferior to A.I.
"I don't like the idea of being a house cat," said Musk on the topic.
@BelovedRevol Maybe next month
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 25, 2017
Musk has been working on the project for a while, but in an answer to a tweet regarding neural lace, Musk's short answer of "Maybe next month," hints the possible immense progress that has already been made. Of course, no one really knows just how much he's already made until an official announcement is made.