IBM stuffs 16 million neuron chips into binary ‘frog’ brain

Cram 5.4 billion gates, million neurons in 28nm CMOS processor

By Chris Williams,

IBM researchers developing chips that mimic the brains of mortals say they’ve created a 4,096-core processor that simulates a million neurons.

The SyNAPSE silicon, fabricated by Samsung using a 28nm process, has 5.4 billion CMOS transistor gates, consumes 70mW, and uses a processor architecture completely unlike today’s CPUs.


The aim is to build a computer with ten billion neurons and a hundred-trillion synapses that consumes just one kilowatt of power and occupies less than two litres in volume.


That’s two orders of magnitude down from what DARPA describes as a “human-level design”, as you can see from this slide. Today, the technology represents 16 million neurons as opposed to the roughly 100 billion inhabiting each of our grey matter.

DARPA Synapse project roadmapDARPA’s SyNAPSE timeline from 2011 … click to enlarge

“16 million neurons is roughly the scale of a frog brain,” Prof Furber quipped. “So, the IBM board may be able to catch a fly for its dinner.”


US Secretary of State’s message to Myanmar leaders – Huffington Post

Many hail the Obama administration’s engagement policy. In his speech to graduates of the West Point military academy on May 28, 2014, Obama claimed reforms in Myanmar as a success for U.S. foreign policy.

Obama then said, “We’re now supporting reform and badly needed national reconciliation through assistance and investment, through coaxing and, at times, public criticism. And progress there could be reversed, but if Burma succeeds, we will have gained a new partner without having fired a shot.”
However, Obama’s interpretation of diplomatic success is not pleasantly received in the U.S. Congress. Citing a growing list of human rights violations, the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Ed Royce on July 9, 2014 called for a range of new punitive measures, including visa bans, an end to U.S.-Myanmar military cooperation, and a consideration of re-imposing economic sanctions.


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