From The Ergoweb® Learning Center

Powerful Thoughts From a Monkey

What do you get when you plant a high-tech chip in the brain of a low-tech monkey? A powerful experiment that could signal a future success in helping paralyzed individuals regain control of their limbs or even letting workers throw away their keyboards and mice and run their computers and other equipment with thoughts alone.

Sound a little sci-fi? It would be if it weren’t so true. Researchers at Duke University Medical Center have already met with success after implanting microelectrodes into the brains of two female rhesus macaque monkeys and then sitting the girls down to see what could happen.

For the monkeys, it was a simple game where a joystick was used to move a cursor. Once the task was mastered, it was made more complex by changing the cursor into a robotic arm. Ultimately the joystick was removed to see if the monkeys would merely think the arm movements, and not too long later, one of the monkeys did