zeros and ones and would become
permanently encoded in the device.
A blown fuse would block current and
be read as a zero, while an unblown
fuse would let current pass and act as
a one. This grid of memory circuits
could be made so small that, based
on the test junctions the researchers
made, one million bits of information
could fit in a square millimeter of
paper-thin material. If formed as a
block, the device could store more
than 1 GB of information, or about
1,000 high-quality images, in a volume of 1 cc. The concept is said to be
about five years from commercial
We haven't heard much about
artificial intelligence (AI) lately,
The first CCortex cluster. Courtesy of
Artificial Development, Inc.
but it appears that some serious
research continues in an effort to
achieve this holy grail of computer
science. Artificial Development, Inc.
( www.ad.com), recently announced
that it has completed assembly of the
first functional portion of a prototype
of its CCortex, a 20-billion-neuron
emulation of the human cortex, which
it will use to build a next-generation
artificial intelligence system. The
cluster is a high-performance, parallel
supercomputer, composed of 500
nodes and 1,000 processors, 1.5 terabytes of RAM, and 80 terabytes of
storage. The software/hardware system runs on Linux, using Intel and
AMD processors. When all sections
are assembled, CCortex is expected
to reach a theoretical peak performance of 4,800 Gflops, making it one
of the top 20 fastest computers in the
world. The cluster will be used as a
test bed for beta versions of CCortex.
CCortex is a massive spiking neuron
network emulation that will mimic the
human cortex — the outer layer of
gray matter at the cerebral hemispheres, largely responsible for higher brain functions. The emulation covers up to 20 billion layered neurons
and 2 trillion 8-bit connections. Most
neural network models to date have
been based on the Hebbian network,
FEBRUARY 2004 Circle #124 on the Reader Service Card.
Circle #100 on the Reader Service Card.