The Next Frontier for Brain Implants Is Artificial Vision

Brian Bussard has 25 tiny chips in his brain. They were installed in February 2022 as part of a study testing a wireless device designed to produce rudimentary vision in blind people. Bussard is the first participant.

Bussard, who’s 56, lost vision in his left eye at age 17 after his retina detached. The right eye followed in 2016, leaving him completely blind. He remembers the exact moment it happened. “It was the hardest thing I’ve ever gone through,” he says. Eventually, he learned to adapt.

In 2021, he heard about a trial of a visual prosthesis at Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. Researchers cautioned

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