Every person has believed that they had mind powers at some point or another. Whether you think you can read minds, predict the future, or move things with your mind, everyone's fantasized about it at one point or another.

Young child holds up a bent spoon
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A new scientific breakthrough may have just granted one Arizona man that wish.

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Who is Noland Arbaugh?

Born in Yuma, Noland was a relatively normal child. He grew up, went to school, and played sports. He then pursued his Bachelors at Texas A&M, where he was also a student athlete.

Downtown Yuma sign
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In 2016, Arbaugh began working as a camp counselor in Pennsylvania, where a swimming accident damaged his spinal cord and paralyzed him from the shoulders down. This turned Arbaugh's life upside down, effectively stopping him from doing all the things he loved, specifically playing video games with his friends.

One procedure changed his life.

Neuralink's First Test Subject

If you've never heard of Neuralink before, you've definitely heard of its founder: PayPal, Tesla, and SpaceX founder Elon Musk. Neuralink is meant to be the next step in human communication, with tiny computer chips surgically installed in patients brains that allow them to do extraordinary things.

A computer chip being put into a brain
Credit: Canva

In January of 2024, Arbaugh was selected as the first human test subject. According to Musk's Twitter (or X if you actually call it that), the procedure went off without a hitch, and in March of 2024, Arbaugh made his first public appearance.

He hosted a live stream, showing off his new brain powers by controlling a computer mouse just as well as anyone else. He explained that it's all about thoughts. It's very similar to telling your brain to move your hand, it's almost instinctual.

Diagram of a human head with computer imagery being shot out of the brain
Credit: Canva

Arbaugh has been recovering smoothly, and has stated that there were no complications. This chip gave him a new chance at life, and he says he doesn't want to waste it.


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