Technology is increasingly growing alongside our understanding of the human brain. Thus, we move closer to making some awesome science fiction into reality.
The development of a brain-computer interface (BCI) could be the most important technological breakthrough in decades.
Imagine transmitting signals directly to someone’s brain that would allow them to see, hear or feel specific sensory inputs. Imagine the potential to manipulate computers or any kind of machinery with nothing more than a thought.
Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) acquire brain signals, analyze them, and translate them into commands. Then, commands relay to output devices that carry out desired actions. BCIs do not use normal neuromuscular output pathways. The main goal of BCI is to replace or restore useful function to people disabled by neuromuscular disorders such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, cerebral palsy, stroke, or spinal cord injury.
Currently, Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk is developing Neuralink. A technology of implanting tiny electrodes into the brain.
Neurons are everywhere in our brain. Every time we think, move, feel or remember something, our neurons are at work. The differences in electric potential carried by ions on the membrane of each neuron, generate the signals.
For example, researchers could figure out what signals are sent to the brain by the optic nerve when someone sees the color red. They could rig a camera that would send those exact signals into someone’s brain whenever the camera saw red, allowing a blind person to “see” without eyes.
Currently, brain-computer interfaces are mainly one-directional. Thus, enabling some motor control and communication tools for people with brain injuries. There has recently been some success stimulating the brain to “feel”.