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IBM brain simulations exceed scale of cat's cortex

Jon Brodkin | Nov. 19, 2009
IBM's quest to build a computer that can mimic the human brain has reached a new milestone, with what IBM calls the first brain simulation to exceed the scale of a cat's cortex.

In addition to IBM, the project involves researchers at Stanford University, Cornell University, Columbia University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and UC-Merced. The Blue Gene/P supercomputer that performed the cat cortex simulation is based at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

IBM is announcing its latest advances Wednesday at the SC09 supercomputing conference in Portland, Ore. In addition to the cat cortex simulation, IBM said it has developed a new algorithm dubbed "BlueMatter" that can measure and map the connections between cortical and sub-cortical locations within the human brain.

"Mapping the wiring diagram of the brain is crucial to untangling its vast communication network and understanding how it represents and processes information," IBM said.


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