The Future of Machine Brain Interfaces

The Future of Machine Brain Interfaces

sanjay natarajanSanjay Natarajan, Vice President Technology and Manufacturing Group, Intel Corporation

For the past 40 years, the phenomenon known as Moore’s Law has brought us some amazing technology today, such as self-driving cars, a supercomputer in every pocket, and access to the world’s knowledge just a few keystrokes away. If, 25 years ago, someone told you all of these would be possible, many of you would have labeled them as crazy. And yet here we are.

Unfortunately Moore’s Law is dying. We don’t know yet whether it’s with a whimper or a bang, but all signs point to dying nonetheless. Which begs the important question, “when Moore’s Law dies, what will we all do for living”?
That is the topic of this lunchtime keynote speech. We will try to shine a light another 25 years out and talk about some emerging technologies which look as crazy today as self-driving cars did 25 years ago, but which could in fact be keys to the next technological revolution.

One of these emerging technologies is the field of man/machine interface. This field has been around for a while, but in many ways is still in its infancy. Forget about keyboards and mice as your interface to the computer. Forget about talking to Siri. In 25 years, the technology will exist so that you can simply think to your computer.

Another emerging technology is the field of 3D printing, particularly 3D bioprinting. In 25 years, the technology will exist to print usable tissues and organs, incorporating your individual DNA sequence and your own stem cells. Printed body parts will be part of our future.

These ideas seem crazy today, just as other ideas did 25 years ago. They raise a host of ethical issues, not to mention new reliability concerns. And there is a lot of work to be done to make these a reality. But many of the fundamental barriers to making these a reality have already been overcome.


Sanjay Natarajan spent over 22 years in Intel’s Technology Development organization. Most recently, as a Vice President in Intel’s Technology and Manufacturing Group, he led the development of Intel’s 14nm process technology, today’s leading state-of-the-art process worldwide. In July of 2015, Sanjay left Intel to pursue other interests. One of those interests is advising semiconductor companies around the world on how to navigate the choppy waters of the semiconductor business. Another interest — as a Professor in the College of Engineering at Portland State University — is in exploring emerging technology options for well past the Moore’s Law Era.