We all have seen countless movies in which robots take over the world and wipe out humanity, where robots behave like humans and form a whole force to fight against the creatures that created them. Most of us didn’t really believe the fact that one day, robots that behave like humans, would actually become real. But well, the impossible was made possible, because scientists were able to make tiny human brains and hook them up to robots! For many, it is still unbelievable, but it is true that scientists are actually moving closer and closer to actually creating life in a laboratory.
The steps that have been taken are just the beginning and there is a very long way to go till scientists are able to actually completely replicate a human brain and successfully implant it into a metal body and link them both together.
Scientists have been able to come up with ways to make robots behave like humans.
They were able to produce organoids which generate brain waves that could probably show signs of consciousness, and qualities of human brain like being capable of sentience and of feeling pain, agony and distress.
It all started at the University of California, San Diego lab of biologist Alysson Muotri, where, using stem leaves, scientists were able to grow organoids. These are tiny, self-organized three-dimensional tissue cultures. These organoids were then packed into a box and shipped to space to see how they develop in a zero-gravity environment. As said by Muotri, they are most likely ‘replicating like crazy’ in space.
It was then observed that the organoids produced were giving off brain waves or complex patterns of neural activities. As the organoids matured, it was observed that they showed changes in the brain waves, similar to the changes that take place in the developing brain of a premature baby. This peculiar finding is forcing the scientists to revisit the limitations of lab-grown mini-organs and the ethical issues surrounding them.
To proceed with the experiment, scientist Muotri hooked the mini-brains up onto a spider-shaped robot in order to study the neural activity. The results that he gets from this could possibly show that scientists are now able to generate partially conscious life in a laboratory.
Scientist Dr. Muotri emphasized on the fact that these are just clusters of replicating brain cells, not actual brains. Another point to state is that the mini-brains barely scratch the surface of a human brain’s capabilities. The human brain is believed to be very complex and the mini-brains are just a simple ball of neurons, nothing compared to the complexities of the human brain. But, of course, creating these simple balls of neurons, somewhat similar to the human brain, was also believed to be an impossible task.
As the scientists agree, there is a long way to go to make human brain robots a success in the world of science and technology. Never the less, this is also a huge landmark and many scientist across the globe are experimenting with and are hopefully that this research will not stop here.