Neuralink President Max Hodak Leaves Elon Musk’s Brain Implant Company

Neuralink President Max Hodak announced on Saturday, via Twitter, that he is no longer with the health tech venture in which he was a co-founder with Elon Musk and seven other scientists and engineers. He said he has not been working there for a few weeks, but did not reveal the circumstances of his departure.

Fremont, California-based Neuralink is, “developing ultra-high bandwidth brain-machine interfaces to connect humans and computers,” according to the company’s self-description on LinkedIn.

Musk – who is also the CEO of electric car makers Tesla and the aerospace defense contractor SpaceX – has said, without showing evidence this is possible, that Neuralink’s devices could enable “superhuman cognition,” enable paralyzed people to operate smartphones or robotic limbs with their minds someday, and “solve” autism and schizophrenia.

Founded in 2016, with Musk investing tens of millions of his significant personal wealth, Neuralink is also developing surgical robotics to implant its devices, essentially sewing tiny wires about a quarter of the diameter of a human hair to connect the implants to the brain.

Skeptics abound.

After the August 2020 demo, MIT Technology Review deemed Neuralink “neuroscience theater,” in a scathing teardown of the presentation.

Musk does not have a background in neuroscience or medical devices but, according to a project director at Neuralink quoted by The New York Times in 2019, has been “active in trying to help solve the engineering challenges that Neuralink faces.”

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SOURCE: CNBC, Lora Kolodny

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