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Simulated Brain Ramps Up To Include 100 Trillion Synapses

• Rebecca Boyle via PopSci.com
 

The Sequoia supercomputer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, recently crowned world champion of supercomputers, just simulated 10 billion neurons and 100 trillion connections among them--the most powerful brain simulation ever. IBM and LLNL built an unprecedented 2.084 billion neurosynaptic cores, which are an IBM-designed computer architecture that is designed to work like a brain.

IBM was careful to say it didn’t build a realistic simulated complete brain-- “Rather, we have simulated a novel modular, scalable, non-von-Neumann, ultra-low power, cognitive computing architecture,” IBM researchers say in an abstract (PDF) of their new paper. It meets DARPA’s metric of 100 trillion synapses, which is based on the number of synapses in the human brain. This is part of DARPA’s cognitive computing program, called Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics (SyNAPSE).

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