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France’s answer to Neuralink sends message to Macron using movement and brainwaves in world first

Inclusive Brains sends a message using a brain-computer headset
Inclusive Brains sends a message using a brain-computer headset Copyright Euronews/Pascale Davies
Copyright Euronews/Pascale Davies
By Pascale Davies
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The demonstrator raised his hands in the air to show how the message to the French president was sent with mental and physiological commands.

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France's answer to Neuralink sent a message to President Emmanuel Macron on the social media platform X on Friday using only a device controlled by movement and the mind.

Using a non-invasive brain-computer interface powered by multimodal generative artificial intelligence (AI), the technology created by the Marseille-based company Inclusive Brains was demonstrated to a live audience at the UN's "AI for Good" Summit in Geneva. 

The demonstrator raised his hands in the air to show how the message to the French president was sent with mental and physiological commands.

Head movement controlled the cursor and the brainwaves were used to click the computer mouse through a small headset device.  

It took a couple of minutes to write and send the tweet, which read “Hello UN! World premiere made in France Fierté Française! cc Emmanuel Macron,” which included emojis and a photo. 

The company’s co-founder and CTO Paul Barbaste said it could have been quicker if not for being in a live environment. 

“It was quite stressful the level of concentration. From what I know about the technology, if I hadn't been in such a stressful environment, I might have clicked faster,” he told Euronews Next.

Macron responded in a post on X, stating it was the “first tweet in history written and published only by thought”.

The European Neuralink?

The company, which only has a team of four people, has set its sights high. 

“Do we want to be at least the European Neuralink? We are, but with a positive twist to it,” Inclusive Brain’s founder and CEO Olivier Oullier told Euronews Next.

“We really want to be able to leverage AI and neurotechnology in order to improve inclusion in the workplace, to allow people also to have the physical and mental health being assisted thanks to this technology”. 

Inclusivity is also central to the company.

“If we can do it here in this non-friendly environment [at the AI for Good Summit], in a sense, people will be able to leverage this at home. Some people are isolated,” he said.

“And if you can't communicate with the world you cannot study, if you cannot study, you cannot work. If you cannot work, you're excluded from society”. 

However, sending posts via X is not the only feat achieved by the company. 

Last month in Marseille, Nathalie Labrégère, a 34-year-old woman with physical and cognitive disabilities participated in a relay and was able to hold the Olympic torch thanks to the technology, which was used in a mind-controlled exoskeleton. 

She could control the arm by opening her mouth or kissing the air. 

The company hopes that it can scale up and enjoy the success of other French start-ups. 

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“We saw Mistral AI being supported by and funded and being able to basically develop products that, can challenge OpenAI,” said Oullier. 

“We've been able to do this with very little money. We're already doing amazing things”.

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