Massive Parallel Processing vs. The Human Brain

February 16, 2011

Today is the last day of the Jeopardy tournament between IBM’s Watson Supercomputer and Jeopardy nerds Ken Jennings and Brad Rutters. On a technical level this is a competition between 16 Terabyte RAM and 90 3.5 Ghz CPUs resulting in about 80 trillion computations per second and two human brains, each one being equipped with about 50-100 billion neurons.

At the moment it looks like Watson is going to win the competition. This illustrates, once more after Gary Kasparov vs. Deep Blue, (1) that computing power increases exponentially, a fact also known as Moore’s law, and (2) that as the more computers rely on learning algorithms, the more they resemble real human beings.

I collected some links on the topic:

Update 17th February: And the winner is: IBM’s Watson!

Hal 9000

...reminds me of HAL 9000 (image via Wikipedia)

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