IBM develops electronic brain

Microprocessor is capable of re-wiring connections, could begin to learn like human brain

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IBM develops electronic brain IBM has developed a microprocessor that mimics the actions of the human brain, re-wiring its connections as it comes across new information.
By  Georgina Enzer Published  August 21, 2011

IBM has developed a microprocessor that is capable of re-wiring its connections as it comes across new information, similar to the way the human brain works, according to the BBC.

Scientists developing the microprocessor believe that in being able to re-wire itself, this technology could begin to learn like the human brain. These cognitive computers could then be used for researching human behaviour and monitoring the environment.

IBM's project leader, Dharmendra Modha, said they are trying to recreate emotion, perception, sensation and cognition in the microprocessors.

The SyNAPSE system uses two prototype ‘neurosynaptic computing chips', which have 256 computational cores, the electronic equivalent of neurons, according to scientists.

One chip has 262,144 programmable synapses, while the other contains 65,536 learning synapses.

In humans and animals, the process of learning is down by forming and strengthening synaptic connections between brain cells and while a machine cannot solder and de-solder its electrical tracks, it can simulate this by strengthening the signal on more important information and paying less attention to others.

IBM has just been awarded $21m by the US Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to continue work on the SyNAPSE project.

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