Will brains be stored on SSDs?
Hardvard researchers with Samsung Electronics’ engineers published a paper on the scientific research journal, Nature Electronics, about realizing neuromorphic chips that can mimic the brain.
“The essence of the vision put forward by the authors is best summed up by the two words, ‘copy’ and ‘paste'”, explains Samsung’s official announcement.
Although still years away from becoming a reality, the team hopes that their roadmap will someday enable the development of computer chips that match the human brain’s unique features of low power consumption, easy learning, environmental adaption, and, eventually, “autonomy and cognition”.
The venture consists in copying the brain’s neuronal connection map using a nanoelectrode array developed by Dr. Ham and Dr. Park and pasting this map onto memories such as Solid-State Drives.
To do that they enter into a large number of neurons and accurately record their electrical signals. These recordings form an intricate “neuronal wiring map” which can then be copied and pasted. The brain is made up of a large number of neurons, and their wiring map is responsible for the brain’s functions. Thus the knowledge of the map is the key to reverse-engineering the brain.
According to Samsung’s announcement, a human brain contains roughly 100 billion neurons and “a thousand or so times more synaptic connections”, meaning that the project’s final neuromorphic chip will require 100 trillion memories. Because of the large amount of data required to store information from neurons and synaptic connections, the chip will need to be developed employing 3D memories.
However, just because Samsung and Harvard’s neuromorphic aims are far off in the future doesn’t imply that some amazing advances in neuroscience and brain-computer interface aren’t being made now.
Will copying and pasting brain structure further boost the existing A.I.?
It’s possible that some hidden potentialities of our brains may help A.I. to enhance and better simulate the functions of a human brain along with its existing capabilities. From one side we may have smarter A.I. to help us find useful solutions to our problems in every field but, on the other hand, it may be used to deceive humans, to manipulate them in a smarter way and concince them to do what the people owning this power want.