Japanese Supercomputer Achieves 10% of Human Brain CapacityBy Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Friday, June 23, 2006
It has been estimated (Kurzweil) that our brains can calculate at 10 petaflops per second, based on the number of neurons and the average number of connections per neuron.
Riken has developed a supercomputer that it says achieves maximum theoretical performance of 1 petaflops (1,000 teraflops). Though the special-purpose machine does not run Linpack, the benchmark software used for the Top 500 supercomputer ranking, its theoretical performance is nearly three times that of the top-ranked BlueGene/L installed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
Intel K.K. (Intel Corp.’s Japanese unit) and NEC subsidiary SGI Japan Ltd. collaborated with Riken on development of the system, which was designed as a dedicated machine for molecular dynamics simulation. The supercomputer is installed at Riken’s Yokohama Institute, and Riken plans to show it off at an open house scheduled for Saturday (June 24).
Dubbed the MDGrape-3, the molecular dynamics simulator comprises 201 units of Riken’s proprietary system and two types of Intel Xeon-based servers. Each Riken unit has 24 MDGrape-3 chips, each offering 230 Gflops. The chip was developed in 2004 as the core processing element for the supercomputer. Foundry partner Hitachi Ltd. fabricated the chips on its HDL4N 130-nanometer process technology.
By 2010, a single large computer would have the raw capacity of one of our brains. Organizing the data and software will lag behind by another decade or so.
Web service centers like Google or Amazon or Ebay or multi-player games will likely have similar computing capacities as well, but have 100’s of millions of humans (ie. us) shaping their soon-to-be superhuman intelligence every minute with every click.
For $1,000, many people will be able to own an extra brain by 2017.
Link via Joel