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Mis - Write Up on Latest Technology by Ibm

In: Business and Management

Submitted By Saby11
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-IBM simulates 4.5% of the human brain - Skynet and Terminator next?

Author: Jason Kennedy
Date: October 27, 2011
The article describes how latest research by IBM shows that computers may soon be able to match human brains. When it comes to storage, machines have long surpassed human’s capacity and in terms of mathematics, fast computers beat us by far in solving complex equations. However, (at least until now) humanity wins in the brain’s sheer computational power and energy efficiency.
IBM’s Blue Gene supercomputer has already outclassed the processing power of some animals like mice, rats and cats. Of the 20 billion neurons and the connecting 200 trillion synapses the human brain contains, IBM’s Blue Gene simulated about 4.5%. By 2019, the company is confident to have equaled the processing power of one entire human brain.
Certainly this topic puts a lot of people on edge. We may all have heard about Moore’s Law of computers suggesting that a PC’s processing capacity will drastically increase over the years but the fact that our society may reach a point where computers are intelligent enough to make themselves smarter through repetition and design, and eventually outperform humanity is intimidating and needs to be discussed. Like we talked about it in class, where will this lead to? Will we experience a real-life matrix fighting machines à la “I, Robot”? Will we all be part of science fiction, with the difference that fiction has become reality?
We should all be open to change and progress but I foresee fatal implications from letting computers become the most intelligent things around. It is bad enough that we keep destroying our planet by adding to global warming or the world’s debt, but ultimately, this would mean the absolute worst case scenario: humanity against computers. First we program, train and watch them grow (just like the case described in the book on page 442, where Brian O’Reilly used neural networks and organized them like a human brain) and then the apprentice will outstrip his master. Given the rapid pace in IT advancement these days, there is probably not much we can do about this trend. Nevertheless, it is important to raise awareness among the people and keep a critical eye on latest research.

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