Meet Oshiorenoya Agabi, The Nigerian Building A Computer Made Of ‘Human Brains’ [OPEN]

Oshiorenoya Agabi is CEO of Koniku, which makes computer chips that include real biological neurons. Photo Credit: The Business Journals

Nigeria is not a known force in the world when it comes to artificial intelligence but that may soon change as a Nigerian, Oshiorenoya Agabi is about to make an epic breakthrough in the field.

AI or artificial intelligence is the simulation of human processes by machines, especially computer systems. These processes include learning, reasoning and self-correction.

Making decisions faster and far more accurately than humans is considered the next step in the evolution of AI.

Agabi believes that these processors are missing one major component in that evolution: actual human brains.


With his startup Koniku, Agabi is working on fusing lab-grown biological neurons onto computer chips in hopes of improving the current state of artificial intelligence.

Rather than building chips that simply mimic the brain function of humans, Agabi hopes go directly to the source and borrow the actual material of the human brains to create these chips – in an effort to make them more powerful than their standard silicon predecessors.

In a chat with Rising Africa about his progress, Agabi said:

‘Essentially, for the last fifteen years, I have worked to understand how neurons talk to each other. I’ve worked on how to communicate with individual neurons – how to read information from them and write information into them.”

A komiku compressor (Photo: Koniku)
A koniku compressor Photo Credit: Rising Africa

So, through years of teaching machines to learn, and through the study of the brain’s mechanics, Agabi believes that his team will be able to build a computer chip with living, learning processors.

Later this year, Agabi will be one of the African speakers who will grace the TED stage in Arusha, Tanzania.


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