Well, I’ve played golf few years back with a Silicon Valley lawyer who specializes in IP. (Intellectual Property)
He used to tell me rumors that AMD and Intel were already working on future computers that are “organic”, sorta like human brains.
It seems that he might have been telling the truth:
“The brain is the hardware,” says Modha, “and from it arises processes such as sensation, perception, action, cognition, emotion and interaction.” Of this, the most important is cognition, the seat of which is believed to reside in the cerebral cortex.
The structure of the cerebral cortex is the same in all mammals. So researchers started with a real-time simulation of a small brain, about the size of a rat’s, in which they put together simulated neurons connected through a digital network. It took 8 terabytes of memory on a 32,768-processor BlueGene/L supercomputer to make it happen.
The simulation doesn’t replicate the rat brain itself, but rather imitates just the cortex. Despite being incomplete, the simulation is enough to offer insights into the brain’s high-level computational principles, says Modha.