Another step taken towards creating a synthetic brain

Mar 25th, 2009 | By | Category: Inspiring, Science, Technology

http://www.technologyreview.com/computing/22339/?a=f

I imagine it is because the final episode of Battlestar is very fresh in my head but the increasing advancement towards a synthetic brain is looking eerily predicted by that show.  On one side we have IBM creating software to mimic the workings of a brain, and on the other side we have an international team of european scientists recreating the physical hardware of a brain on a chip..  What happens when both of these projects merge?

This is where it really gets scary though:

“The advantage of this hardwired approach, as opposed to a simulation, Karlheinz continues, is that it allows researchers to recreate the brain-like structure in a way that is truly parallel. Getting simulations to run in real time requires huge amounts of computing power. Plus, physical models are able to run much faster and are more scalable. In fact, the current prototype can operate about 100,000 times faster than a real human brain. “We can simulate a day in a second,” says Karlheinz.

Take  a long hard minute to think about the implications of that statement.  ‘We can simulate a day in a second’ .  If we as a species, in our relative technological infancy are already glimpsing at technology where we can create a synthetic human brain that can simulate an entire day in one second, what does that imply?  Again keep in mind we are in our technological infancy, in 20-40 years this technology will no doubt be realized and probably be millions times more powerful than today, meaning we could simulate a lifetime in a second.  You have now created a nearly infinitely powerful brain and could live aeons out in a matter of minutes, you have in essence created a god in it’s own universe.   It then becomes time to start asking ourselves if we are simply 1 second being lived out in one of these infinite brains.

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