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Predictions for Neuralink's Friday Announcement

by Michaël Trazzi1 min read26th Aug 20203 comments


NeuralinkForecasts (Specific Predictions)
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Elon Musk just announced a "live webcast of a working Neuralink device" Friday at 3PM PT. In the same vein of last year's Neuralink prediction post, feel free to specify what is likely/unlikely to be revealed, giving your credence. We will likely do a "scoring of the predictions" after the event (like in last year's post).

Related predictions

--Metaculus prediction of 22% that Neuralink gets permission to implant brain-machine interface device in human before January 2022 (July 2019)

Related announcements

-- Elon Musk tweeted: "If you’ve solved hard problems with phones / wearables (sealing, signal processing, inductive charging, power mgmt, etc), please consider working at engineering@neuralink.com" (July 2020)

-- "If we implement neuralink - can we listen to music directly from our chips? Great feature." received the answer "yes" from Elon Musk.

Other resources for the prediction

--neuralink's job board

--Elon Musk reveals new details about Neuralink on Joe Reagan (25 minutes, May 2020)

--neuralink's whitepaper (July 2019, 12 pages)

--neuralink's 2019 launch event presentation (July 2019, 1h44)

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Gosh, I know very little about this. But to get the ball rolling, I'll make some guesses:
--The device will be implanted in a human (20%)

--The device will be allegedly capable of functioning for more than ten years in the brain without causing any significant damage (30%)

--The demonstration will involve controlling a mouse/cursor of some sort on a screen (30%)

--The demonstration will involve controlling a virtual character of some sort (30%)

Note: I also know very little about this. Few thoughts on your guesses (and my corresponding credences):

--It seems pretty likely that it will be for humans (something that works for mices wouldn't be impressive enough for an announcement). In last year's white paper they were already inserting electrode arrays in the brain. But maybe you mean something that lives inside the brain independently? (90%)

--If by "significative damage" you mean "not altering basic human capabilities" then it sounds plausible. From the white paper th... (read more)

4Daniel Kokotajlo5moI was thinking they'll probably show off a monkey with the device doing something. Last year they were talking about how they were working on getting it safe enough to put in humans without degrading quickly and/or causing damage IIRC; thus I'd be surprised if they already have it in a human, surely there hasn't been enough time to test its safety... IDK. Your credences seem reasonable.