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Posted By Peter Bentley

We've been working on my systemic computer for several years but it's only now that we have a working hardware version, thanks to my talented EngD student Christos Sakellariou.

The computer is a result of more than a decade of research into modelling natural processes using conventional computers (processes such as evolution, brains, ecosystems, etc). The models were usually very slow and I realised that our conventional computers have a very different way of processing information compared to all natural systems. For example, our brain has billions of neurons, many of which can fire at the same time. This means information is processed in parallel, distributed across the whole brain. In conventional computers, only one (or very few) instructions are followed at the same time, memory is centralised, and so although they do things very fast, they are still very slow compared to our brains. The other problem is failure - a centralised architecture will fail as soon as one component fails. In our brain we lose neurons every day but we're fine - our brains have the redundancy to cope and the ability to reconfigure themselves to make use of what is left. So I decided I wanted to build a computer that worked more like a brain. The result is the systemic computer. It processes information in parallel and it can reconfigure itself if it gets damaged.

We're still working on it, and you can read more about the systemic computer here. However, we're very pleased to have a lead technology story in New Scientist today! Not only that, but the story was the most read on the New Scientist website . Thanks to Paul Marks for the article.

New Scientist systemic computer article


 
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