Scientists are looking forward to building life-like supercomputers that are light years ahead of the current products of crude AI.
While supercomputers can churn out information at a rate that is a hundred million times faster than current personal computers, they also need millions of dollars of investment just to charge and cool them while they operate.
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The experts are looking into the matter. The next step ahead is the wonderful world of energy-efficient biological supercomputers that will change the game of AI forever.
The team of researchers changed the electrons in a microchip with a biological agent that powers human cells. Their goals were the reduction of costs and the elimination of the scourge of overheating.
This bionic scheme consists of a specially designed nanostructure network of molecular motor-driven protein filaments. It is very energy-efficient thus doing away with the cooling systems normally employed for ordinary PCs.
ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) was utilized as the power source for the biological supercomputer. The model that was created was a replica and used up less energy. This was because it employed proteins that composed the functional materials in a cell.
A network of extreme complexity was built in a very limited area using this schemata. The idea got off the ground after one of the experts scribbled some equations on the back of an envelope.
He was drunk and we all know that alcohol loosens some of the inhibitions we carry around with us under normal conditions of sobriety. The drawings that got sketched in a hurry while in the inebriated state looked like tiny worms that were navigating mazes.
This nanoscale geometry and engineering led to wonders on a real time basis. It is in fact the first time that biological supercomputers have been shown to have a practical application in reality.
The circuit almost looks like an aerial view of a large city with roads that interconnect. The appearance of cars and trucks as they move along the roads consuming fuel also applies to these super biocomputers.
Mostly the difference lies in the size. The chip is just 1.5 square centimeters. Most of the roads have been etched on its surface. Instead of the flow of electrons, the passage of shoestrings of proteins via the power of ATP is seen in this bizarre biocomputer.
Energy is conserved and the inconvenience of overheating is avoided with the least amount of effort. The costs are very little and the error rates are close to nil too.
While it is difficult to predict when in the future we will have a large-scale biological supercomputer, the scientists are busy working their way towards this cherished objective. ”This would not have been possible without the enthusiasm and hard work of Prof. Linke, who is also co-corresponding author, and his group, Prof. Prof. Månsson and his group - both from Sweden, Prof. Diez and his group from Germany, and Dr. Van Delft from Philips, The Netherlands. Now that this model exists as a way of successfully dealing with a single problem, there are going to be many others who will follow up and try to push it further, using different biological agents, for example,” says Nicolau. “It’s hard to say how soon it will be before we see a full scale bio super-computer. One option for dealing with larger and more complex problems may be to combine our device with a conventional computer to form a hybrid device. Right now we’re working on a variety of ways to push the research further.”
This study has been published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).