RE: [Fwd: [>Htech] Artificial Development to Build World's Biggest Spiking Neural Network]

From: Ben Goertzel (
Date: Sun Sep 14 2003 - 23:26:23 MDT


I just saw a talk by one of the leaders of this enterprise, at the
Accelerating Change 2003 conference.

It's an interesting effort, but they seem to have no particular insight into
the operation of the human brain and how it may give rise to intelligent
behavior. Their focus so far has been on the mechanics of building up the
distributed neural-net simulation. They have no neuroscientists involved
with the project, just programmers.

It seems very likely that their initial efforts will not lead to anything
very interesting. But, afterwards, if they ally themselves with some folks
with more insight into the neuroscience side of brain modeling, they might
come up with something interesting/useful, who knows.

-- Ben G

-----Original Message-----
From: []On Behalf Of Brian
Sent: Sunday, September 14, 2003 1:32 PM
Subject: [Fwd: [>Htech] Artificial Development to Build World's Biggest
Spiking Neural Network]

Slight amount of new info here

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: [>Htech] Artificial Development to Build World's Biggest
Spiking Neural Network
Date: Sun, 14 Sep 2003 00:09:17 -0000
From: oxyryxo <>

  CCortex Will Rank among the World's Fastest Computers

PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 12, 2003--Artificial
Development, Inc. today announced that it has completed assembly of
the first functional portion of a prototype of CCortex(TM), a 20-
billion neuron emulation of the human cortex, which it will use to
build a next-generation artificial intelligence system. Artificial
Development will initiate testing of CCortex in October.
The cluster being assembled at Data Center is a high-
performance, parallel supercomputer, composed of 500 nodes and one
thousand processors, 1.5 terabytes of RAM, and 80 terabytes of

The low-cost software/hardware system runs on Linux, Intel and AMD
processors. When all sections are assembled, CCortex is expected to
reach a theoretical peak performance of 4,800 Gflops, making it one
of the top 20 fastest computers in the world. The cluster will be
used as a test bed for beta versions of CCortex.

CCortex is a massive spiking neuron network emulation and will mimic
the human cortex, the outer layer of gray matter at the cerebral
hemispheres, largely responsible for higher brain functions. The
emulation covers up to 20 billion layered neurons and 2 trillion 8-
bit connections.

"Our new neural network is several orders of magnitude larger than
any of today's research efforts," said Marcos Guillen, Artificial
Development CEO.

How CCortex Works: A Spike-Friendly Neural Network

Most neural network models to date have been based on the Hebbian
network, a simplified version of the real neural networks based
exclusively on connectivity properties between neurons.

CCortex adds to classical Hebbian connections a time-sensitive,
analog representation of the shape of "spikes," the pulsing patterns
that enable neuron populations to communicate with each other. This
allows CCortex to tune vast populations of neurons and the
information they hold to complex spiking patterns, adding a much
higher level of complexity to a highly realistic simulation.

The CCortex software emulation applies its Spiking Neuron Software
Engine to a database that has a representation of the layered
distribution of neural nets and detailed interconnections in the
brain. The data closely emulates specialized regions of the human
cortex, corpus callosum, anterior commissure, amygdale and

The emulation aims to actualize the estate of each neuron and its
connections several times per second, maintaining a myriad of
competing spiking patterns, while providing feedback and limited
interaction with simplified versions of other nervous and sensory

About Artificial Development

Mountain View, Calif.-based Artificial Development was founded by
Founder, President and CEO Marcos Guillen in July 2003. A privately
held company, Artificial Development is comprised of an
international, multidisciplinary team of computer programmers,
mathematicians, and computer infrastructure professionals who are
working to introduce the world's first true AI. The company's
technology, CCortex(TM) is a complete emulation of the human cortex
and peripheral systems. Artificial Development plans to deliver a
wide range of commercial products based on CCortex(TM) to enhance
business relationships globally. For more information, please visit and

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Brian Atkins
Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

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