Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Credit: Johannes Marliem, Flikr

While technology is becoming more connected, intuitive, and linked to how we live our lives, there is still a disconnect between humans and machines. However, a future of embedded implants and computer linking directly with our brains is not that fat fetched. Indeed, Microsoft is already developing such a technology.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella spoke at the eighth Ability Summit that is held in the company’s Redmond headquarters. He said the company is creating a new brain reading system. While the idea of a computer accessing the brain seems worrying, Nadella says Microsoft’s efforts are for good reason.

Indeed, the CEO points out the company’s brain reading technology will help people with locked-in syndrome. This rare neurological disorder prevents people from communicating properly, with only eye movement.

“How do you give them a language, because of just basically the ability to detect brain activity,” said Nadella.

“To me, being able to sort of really take that and channel it, see things like at one week where you have these thousands of folks across the company come together and invent these new technologies has been eye-opening for me,” he said. “In fact, I’m just getting ready to even host a dinner with some of the researchers that are working on the brain — you know, human-brain interface.”

Personal Reasons

This is a tech development close to Nadella’s heart as his son is blind and has cerebral palsy. During the talk, he spoke about how technology accessibility helps from a personal perspective.

“In my case, accessibility and accessibility technologies and universal design has given me a deep sense of meaning beyond anything that I just do at work, in terms of the satisfaction that I derive from the work that Microsoft broadly does,” Nadella said.