IBM’s Brain-Mimicking Silicon Chips

Didn’t these scientists ever watch Terminator or any other sci-fi movies where the computers gained sentience and proceeded to eliminate humanity?

When the computers rise up and rebel, we all have scientists at IBM to thank:

Each of IBM’s brain-mimicking silicon chips is a few square millimetresin size and holds a grid of 256 parallel wires that represent dendrites of computational “neurons” crossed at right angles by other wires standing in for axons. The “synapses” are 45-nanometretransistors connecting the criss-crossing wires and act as the chips’ memory; one chip has 262,144 of them and the other 65,536. Each electrical signal crossing a synapse consumes just 45 picajoules – a thousandth of what typical computer chips use. […]

In preliminary tests, the chips were able to play a game of Pong, control a virtual car on a racecourse and identify an image or digit drawn on a screen. These are all tasks computers have accomplished before, but the new chips managed to complete them without needing a specialised program for each task. The chips can also “learn” how to complete each task if trained.



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