Well, this is a wee bit disconcerting. Computer engineers at IBM are working to create something truly unique; the first ever silicon replica of a human brain. This mimic will “copy the compact power” of fleshy brains by using microchips to simulate all one billion neurons. Blue Brain (via NewScientist) will allow scientists to simulate an organic brain with greater accuracy than ever before.
Steve Furber, the scientist driving the project, has high hopes for Blue Brain. He wants to teach it how to control a robot arm, and than how to control a humanoid body. He believes that a robot with a humanlike brain will be able to handle image recognition, navigation, and decision-making tasks more easily than other robots.
This proto-AI will be ARM-based. The chips under contstruction include 20 ARM processor cores, each of which models 1000 neurons. 50,000 chips will be needed to reach the 1 billion neuron target. This is seriously cool...and slightly terrifying. First, this thing learns how to control a humanoid body. Then, it sends that body back in time to kill John Connor.