IBM successfully developed a processor with the same structure as the human brain

ByKeoni Cabral

Although we may compare the human brain to a computer, the real situation is "similar" because the actual mechanisms are completely different from each other. The chip that IBM has successfully developed newly is held by the human brainneural networkIt has become distinct from the existing computer technology to reproduce the high processing capacity and high energy efficiency.

Why IBM's New Brainlike Chip May Be "Historic" | MIT Technology Review

IBM researchers make a chip full of artificial neurons | Ars Technica

Collaborative research was conducted by Cornell University and IBM, and a diagram showing the structure of chips Samsung created using 28 nm process technology is here. 64 x 64 processor cores are arranged on the chip, and they are connected so as to communicate via the network. Its structure is close to that of the human brain, which is composed of hundreds of billions of nerve cells among neurons formed by "axons" and "dendrites", which is a huge neuron network, We are attempting to reproduce the brain structure at completely different level from what has been reproduced on a software basis.

"TrueNorth"The chip named above has more than 5.4 billion transistors and about 4000 cores, and each core behaves like a neuron. 100 kilobits of memory is implemented in the core, and information such as the state of the neuron, the source of the signal and the address of the destination is stored. Also, like the actual neuron, it is also designed to store the value indicating the strength of the connection by connection. Each core receives a signal from another 256 core, and a structure is formed that can transmit a signal to 256 cores.

Each core has a communication device that sends a "nerve spike" to send a signal to another core. Since each chip is arranged in a grid shape, in designating a transmission destination, designation is made using XY coordinates and the "neuron ID" unique to each core, each core has a random number generation function , There is also a mechanism to reproduce stochastic spike activity existing in the human brain.

The core that TrueNorth forms is existingVon Neumann type computerBecause the software has completely different structure, so far the software is not usable at all, TrueNorth was also developed by IBMCOMPASSIt is said that the neural network reproduction software package called "hardware implementation" was implemented, so there was no major problem in realizing it.

TrueNorth is thought to demonstrate its power in analyzing perceptual data such as images and sounds, and it has very high energy efficiency. Although the operation clock of the whole system is 1 kHz which is extremely low according to modern standards, since each core is designed to asynchronously communicate and the core which does not have processing is designed to transition to the idle state, The output density of TrueNorth is 20 mW per square centimeter. This means that if you are an existing processor, you will have literally a difference in power saving performance compared to being 50 W per square centimeter. The following figure shows the calorific value when TrueNorth mounted on the left side of the board sends data from the right FPGA for processing. When you compare both, TrueNorth can see that there is such a difference that it feels like stopping the operation.

The survey team gives an example of reference values. In the test, we analyzed images of 30 frames for 400 × 240 pixels / second, and carried out processing to recognize objects such as pedestrians, bicycles, cars etc. shown inside. The electricity consumed at that time was slightly63 mWIt seems that it was.

In the next step of the research team, we will aim to improve processing capacity by realizing a multilayered structure based on this chip. With progress of existing computer technology reaching its limit, I'd like to continue watching over what kind of role a neuron computer like TrueNorth can play.

· Continued
Ultra power saving chip "TrueNorth" imitating IBM's "brain" steadily evolved, reaching mice brain level - GIGAZINE

in Hardware,   Science, Posted by darkhorse_log