neuralink job posting clinical trial director elon musk

Elon Musk's neurotechnology company, Neuralink, put up a job posting for a new Clinical Trial Director for their to-be flagship product, the titular brain-AI interface, Neuralink.

neuralink job posting clinical trial director elon musk

The posting suggests that, in-line with previous comments by Musk, human trials for the brain-AI interface are poised to commence this year. This also means Musk and Neuralink see themselves as one step closer to a device capable of giving paraplegics and those suffering from other physically incapacitating diseases movement and "digital freedom" once again. 

According to Twitter, though, it also means we're one step closer to replicating the disastrous consequences outlined in the speculative fiction show, Black Mirror.

The comparison stems from how Elon Musk proposes Neuralink will work: a brain chip that can decode "intention" via nerve impulses, making it readable by machines and digital devices. This would allow your brain to, for example, send nerve impulses to a set of digitally-integrated prosthetic legs or hands. Or for your smartphone to sense your input without touching the screen. 

The rudimentary proof-of-concept was put on display last year when Neuralink published a video showing a monkey playing video games with its mind. 


Essentially, researchers taught the AI what nerve impulses correspond with which movements via a joystick. Once enough data was amassed, the AI was able to correctly interpret the impulses and "Pager" the monkey was able to crush a game of Pong with only their mind. 


But that's not all Neuralink has in store according to Musk. Among other capabilities like the power to speak any language without the necessity to learn it, it's the proposed ability to download and store your own memories that captured the attention of the internet.

This hearkens back to two episodes of Black Mirror which explored the pitfalls of recording human memories in an audio-visual format, what it means for privacy and how it could be abused. 

In 'Arkangel', a helicopter parent uses a data chip in her daughter's brain to monitor every moment of her life -- viewing her memories on-demand.

In 'An Entire History of You', a couple purchases neural implants capable of recording memories and end up using it to spy on each other. 

The comparisons between Musk's vision of Neuralink are clear. Whether they'll prove as dystopian and bleak as Black Mirror or turn out to be one of the greatest leap forwards in human consciousness and capability remains to be seen -- and perhaps by whoever cinches the Clinical Director job.