/Could Digital Telepathy Render Language Obsolete?

Could Digital Telepathy Render Language Obsolete?

Key idea: New technologies are more likely to enhance how we learn language, perhaps even enabling us to stream it, just as we do music or movies. But the demise of language by would-be brain tech gurus has been greatly exaggerated.

Original author and publication date: Alisa Vyv Evans- April 26, 2022

Futurizonte Editor’s Note: Writing did change language and the way we communicate. New technologies will also change the way we communicate, telepathy included.

From the article:

According to recent pronouncements by Elon Musk, who among other things, is CEO of Neuralink, language could become obsolete in the near future. This follows Neuralink’s pioneering research into new brain technology that will likely usher in an era of what we might refer to as “digital telepathy” (see Musk’s interview on the Joe Rogan experience here where he discusses this). Under this vision, brain-to-brain communication is the future of communication. Humans will no longer just wear digital tech, such as smartwatches and fitbits. They will have it implanted in their brains. And the advent of such technology would, accordingly, spell the end of language, perhaps even within a decade.

What is “digital telepathy”?
Neuralink is developing neural implants that have been likened to a Fitbit for the brain. The implant, in fact consisting of hundreds of tiny wires, each smaller in width than a human hair, aims to link across the neurons that make up the brain’s grey matter. The research seeks to enable the brain’s thought centres to become linked to the neural implant, in effect, turning a human into a cyborg. If successful, such neural implants would, ultimately, enable us to communicate directly with other human brains without needing to use language.

This would herald a form of digital telepathy, which, according to Elon Musk, would render language obsolete.

Brain Computer Interfaces
The science behind Neuralink is known as a Brain Computer Interface (BCI), and has been around for a relatively long time. For instance, using a BCI it is possible to insert a tiny computer into a brain with damaged vasculature, allowing it to communicate directly with another computer, such as a robotic limb, in the case of amputees, or to manipulate a computer mouse or cursor, for those with damage to motor or communication centres.

But what is new about Neuralink’s research program is the idea that neural implants might ultimately enable humans to communicate not just with computers, in a remedial medical capacity. In addition, healthy brains might ultimately be able to become directly linked to other people’s minds, making language itself redundant.

But outside the realm of science fiction, is this vision of direct brain-to-brain communication really plausible?

READ the full article