Intracortical brain computer interfaces (iBCIs) are being developed to enable people to drive an output device, such as a computer cursor, directly from their neural activity. One goal of the technology is to help people with severe paralysis or limb loss. Key elements of an iBCI are the implanted sensor that records the neural signals and the software that decodes the user's intended movement from those signals. Here, we focus on recent advances in these two areas, placing special attention on contributions that are or may soon be adopted by the iBCI research community. We discuss how these innovations increase the technology's capability, accuracy, and longevity, all important steps that are expanding the range of possible future clinical applications.