BrainGate implants a chip into brain
In a simple explanation the BrainGate system enables a person to use their thoughts to control the mouse and replicate keystrokes on a computer screen. Think "start button" and the mouse arrow moves over the start button.
Implanting the chip
Cyberkinetics radically advanced technology implants a silicon chip onto the surface of the brain that is the size of an aspirin. The chip or array is implanted in an area of the brain that is responsible for limb movement for some applications and other areas of the brain that are responsible for other body processes and functions.
In the current BrainGate system, a thick wrap of wires connects the array to a pedestal which extends into the scalp. From that pedestal comes a cord that is hooked up to several computers so the data can be sent from the brain and then to the PC's that use software algorithms that analyze the electrical activity of neurons and then convert the data and translate it into control signals in computer programs.
The people at Cyberkinetics are even developing a way for poeple with severe motor impairment to communicate with their computers directly with their thoughts. That is such a great technology that Cyberkinetics is developing for such a good cause. For ten years Cyberkinetics has been involved in the development of products for neuroscience research. Development of brain-computer interfaces sees Cyberkinetics as the leader.
On their website you can read more about how this technology works. Much of the content that explains this is very technical at times. Most of it still boggles my mind. Be sure to watch the demo of the BrainGate Neural Interface System because it gave me goose bumps!