A man with a brain implant challenged Neuralink's monkey to a Mind Pong match. Yes, you read that correctly.
Interspecies mental race
Is called Nathan Copeland, and threw down the gauntlet after watching Neuralink's video of their rhesus monkey playing Pong using a brain implant.
If you missed it (I consider it impossible), here is a recap.
Copeland was paralyzed following a car accident, although he retains limited mobility in his shoulder and hand. Last year he received a brain implant (from another company: Neuralink has no solutions on the market yet).
"As soon as I saw her I said, 'I wonder if I could beat that monkey' in Pong," Copeland told the magazine. MIT.
The system allows Copeland to play even complex video games, such as Sonic the Hedgehog. Now it's time to move on to Pong to cross brains with Neuralink's primate.
Preparation and training
Said and done: like any self-respecting sportsman, Copeland is taking the challenge seriously and preparing for the future showdown.
It would be the first time an ape and a human have engaged in a brain battle. It is a "bizarre", of course, but one destined to be remembered for a very long time.
And there are more resources than ever to make it happen.
Man-ape challenge in Mind Pong: far from a game
Imagine a match easily streamed to millions of people online via YouTube or Twitch. A "lectio magistralis" on neural implants that would have an explosive effect on Generation Z children who are refractory to TV.
In fact, Copeland himself has a Twitch profile with the account crossbred900, and hopes it will take off someday.
On equal terms
The brain implant Copeland received in March 2020 is called the "Utah array". He works with a team from the University of Pittsburgh on experiments in which he moves robotic arms and runs computers with his mind.
He has since been able to use it to do a lot of things. He surfed the net and even drew pictures using digital painting apps. One is for sale like NFT. This is his first serious Pong challenge, however.
If Neuralink accepts its challenge, as mentioned, the event could turn a huge spotlight on the potential applications of brain implant technology.
Think of it as the popular equivalent of the meeting between Cassius Clay and George Foreman in Kinshasa in 74.