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Meet the Neuroscientist Who Installed an Implant in His Own Brain @ MIT Technology Review.

Phil Kennedy no longer saw any other way to get the data. That was how one day he came to lie blissfully unconscious on an operating table in Belize while a neurosurgeon sawed off the top of his skull.

Last year, Kennedy, a 67-year-old neurologist and inventor, did something unprecedented in the annals of self-experimentation. He paid a surgeon in Central America $25,000 to implant electrodes into his brain in order to establish a connection between his motor cortex and a computer.

Along with a small group of pioneers, Kennedy had in the late 1980s developed “invasive” human brain-computer interfaces—literally wires inside the brain attached to a computer, and he is widely credited as the first to allow a severely paralyzed “locked-in” patient to move a computer cursor using her brain. “The father of cyborgs,” one magazine called him.

To some researchers, Kennedy’s decisions could be seen as unwise, even unethical. Yet there are cases where self-experiments have paid off. In 1984, an Australian doctor named Barry Marshall drank a beaker filled with bacteria in order to prove they caused stomach ulcers. He later won the Nobel Prize.

Read more.

We were thinking that some of the young people of today that are quantified selfing’, using gadgets to optimize health, record data and more are going to become neurosurgeons and some will go this far, perhaps faster – we could not find a statistic, but we wonder if there are more neurosurgeons self-experimenting or less year over year…