Cortical Labs created a human "mini-brain" DishBrain and trained it to play Pong
The startup Cortical Labs was able to create a human "mini-brain" in laboratory conditions. It was called DishBrain. Scientists were able to train a population of brain cells to play Pong. According to experts, this is the world's first demonstration that the "mini-brain" can learn to perform certain actions.
Here's What We Know
The DishBrain consists of 800,000 cells. The "mini-brain" was connected to a computer running the game Pong. The cells were responsible for moving the rocket up and down, and the electrical impulses that were sent to the neurons determined the position of the ball. DishBrain received strong and weak impulses when the racket hit the ball and when it missed, respectively.
According to the specialists of the startup, the human "mini-brain" can play Pong after five minutes of training. The scientists add that the cell population is very primitive, so it is not able to acquire its own consciousness. But DishBrain can improve its skills. The relevant conclusion was drawn after playing for 20 minutes.
The startup Cortical Labs plans to study DishBrain further. In particular, scientists want to find out whether their "mini-brain" can become a replacement for the real human brain and how alcohol affects its cognitive abilities.
Image: BBC, SciTechDaily