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peter2002
Nov 18, 2002, 08:44 PM
IBM starts work on computer to rival the human brain

By Mark Henderson, Science Correspondent

The first supercomputers to approach and even surpass the processing power of the human brain are to be built by IBM, under a £184 million contract announced by the US Government yesterday.

ASCI Purple and Blue Gene/L will be the fastest and most powerful machines built, with a combined capacity equal to the 500 best of today’s computers.

ASCI Purple, which will be built first and used to simulate nuclear tests, will be able to complete 100 thousand billion calculations per second — a speed known as 100 teraflops that some scientists say is comparable to the human brain.

Blue Gene/L, which has a broader range of functions and will be used by US Department of Energy’s three main laboratories, will be more powerful still, with a maximum speed of 360 teraflops.

The computers, which will be built by 2004, will lack the consciousness, intellect and capacity for thought of a brain, but will be equivalent in calculating speed and power. They have memories of at least two petabytes — equal to a billion books. Mike Nelson, IBM’s director of internet technology and strategy, said: “It is hard to quantify the power of a brain, but when you look at the raw processing power of these machines, you’re looking at figures in the same ballpark.”

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-485578,00.html

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Just think, in 10 years your PowerBook will be able to do 360 teraflops. Just think of the gaming possiblities...

Peter :(

springscansing
Nov 18, 2002, 09:27 PM
Originally posted by peter2002
IBM starts work on computer to rival the human brain

Just think, in 10 years your PowerBook will be able to do 360 teraflops. Just think of the gaming possiblities...

The price seems kind of high. The supercomputer suppose to have 12,500 processors. That is about $31,500 per node! What a rip off of US tax payers' dollars. This computer could be built for a 1/10th the price based on Opteron or X-Serve technology.

And it will be really used to spy and log all your transactions you ever do for the new Homeland Security Department.

Peter :(

MMMMMM... who cares what it costs... its worth it! For.. I donno.. whatever its gonna be used for! *drools*

benixau
Nov 19, 2002, 12:50 AM
you need to wake up. What these super computers are used for is simple.

Thy model weather on it for a week and then play quake against all the other super computers in the world for the next ten years.

You thought they actually did work on them?? HAHAHAHAHA:D

edesignuk
Nov 19, 2002, 01:59 PM
Very interesting, there is another (IMO) better article on this here (http://www.wired.com/news/infostructure/0,1377,56459,00.html) courtesy of wired.com.
From Wired.com Article:
Brains are portable; ASCI Purple will be the size of 197 refrigerator-size boxes covering 8,900 square feet (about the size of two basketball courts) and will weigh 197 tons. The average brain is 56 cubic inches and weighs 3.3 pounds.

If only we could really tap the full power of our brains ;)

Mr. Anderson
Nov 19, 2002, 02:15 PM
Originally posted by edesignuk


If only we could really tap the full power of our brains ;)

That will be truly scary - but I think that biological computers might end up becoming the future - only thing is that right now no one really knows how to build one.

And at the size that these machines are now, it will be many years before they even become managable as computers for everyday use (desktops of even small server size machines).

D