Merging minds and super-powered computing is crucial if people wish to avoid being replaced by AI. If Neuralink can be a game-changer for people with disabilities, cure conditions such as autism and schizophrenia, and enable web browsing and telepathy, Musk's brain-computer interface shouldn't be dismissed.
The FDA's alleged approval of this non-therapeutic research raises several ethical issues. Though it insists "safety, accessibility, and reliability" are its priorities, Neuralink has been involved in botched animal experiments and has already been the subject of federal probes, including one over transporting dangerous pathogens on chips removed from monkey brains in an unsafe manner.
Neuralink isn't alone in trying to use brain-computer interfaces to hack brain signals and transmit them directly to electronic devices. Multiple technologists have discussed a world where anyone could receive brain implants to achieve superintelligence. But the FDA must regulate the rising tide of brain chip companies that may violate not only ethical standards but also conflict-of-interest and security regulations.
There is a 50% chance that the FDA will grant Neuralink permission to sell and implant a brain-machine interface device into general consumers by September 2036, according to the Metaculus prediction community.