$1.5 billion Supercomputer to simulate the Human Brain

The over a period of ten years Human Brain Project, will seek to understand and map the brain structure and function, and aim to translate it into a supercomputer simulation.

The Vision

Understanding the human brain is one of the greatest challenges facing 21st century science. If we can rise to the challenge, we can gain profound insights into what makes us human, develop new treatments for brain diseases and build revolutionary new computing technologies. Modern computing technology has brought these goals within sight. ICT is ready to give us a completely new understanding of the brain and its diseases; understanding the brain will lead inevitably to radical innovation in computing.

Neuroscience is generating exponentially growing volumes of data and knowledge on specific aspects of the healthy and diseased brain, in different species, at different ages. Yet despite these incredible advances, we still lack a unified understanding of the brain that can span its multiple levels of organisation, from genes to cognition and behaviour. The lack of such an understanding is a huge obstacle for pharmaceutical companies trying to develop drugs for brain diseases. It also explains why neuroscience has yet to significantly impact ICT. Scientists have been researching isolated aspects of the brain for more than a century but despite incredible progress, it has become obvious that it will take another century or more before we can measure every gene, protein, cell, synapse and circuit in the brain, in all possible conditions and species, at every possible age, in every possible disease. An alternative strategy is to identify data that absolutely has to be measured experimentally, and to predict the rest from what we already know. This requires a focused plan to integrate and exploit the massive volumes of data and knowledge we already have and the deluge of new data coming from labs all over the world. This will require the development of radically new ICT: new supercomputing technologies to federate and manage the data, to integrate it in computer models and simulations of the brain, to identify patterns and organisational principles that only appear when the data is put together, and to identify gaps to be filled by new experiments.

Therefore, the HBP’s first goal is to build an integrated system of six ICT-based research platforms, providing neuroscientists, medical researchers and technology developers with access to highly innovative tools and services that can radically accelerate the pace of their research. These will include a Neuroinformatics Platform, that links to other international initiatives, bringing together data and knowledge from neuroscientists around the world and making it available to the scientific community; a Brain Simulation Platform, that integrates this information in unifying computer models, making it possible to identify missing data, and allowing in silico experiments, impossible in the lab; a High Performance Computing Platform that provides the interactive supercomputing technology neuroscientists need for data-intensive modeling and simulations; a Medical Informatics Platform that federates clinical data from around the world, providing researchers with new mathematical tools to search for biological signatures of disease; a Neuromorphic Computing Platform that makes it possible to translate brain models into a new class of hardware devices and to test their applications; a Neurorobotics Platform, allowing neuroscience and industry researchers to experiment with virtual robots controlled by brain models developed in the project. The platforms are all based on previous pioneering work by the partners and will be available for internal testing within eighteen months of the start of the project. Within thirty months, the platforms will be open for use by the community, receiving continuous upgrades to their capabilities, for the duration of the project.

The second goal of the project is to trigger and drive a global, collaborative effort that uses the platforms to address fundamental issues in future neuroscience, future medicine and future computing. A significant and steadily growing proportion of the budget will fund research by groups outside the original HBP Consortium, working on themes of their own choosing. Proposals for projects will be solicited through competitive calls for proposals and evaluated by independent peer review.

The end result will be not just a new understanding of the brain but transformational new ICT. As modern computers exploit ever-higher numbers of parallel computing elements, they face a power wall: power consumption rises with the number of processors, potentially to unsustainable levels. By contrast, the brain manages billions of processing units connected via kilometres of fibres and trillions of synapses, while consuming no more power than a light bulb. Understanding how it does this – the way it computes reliably with unreliable elements, the way the different elements of the brain communicate – can provide the key not only to a completely new category of hardware (Neuromorphic Computing Systems) but to a paradigm shift for computing as a whole, moving away from current models of “bit precise” computing towards new techniques that exploit the stochastic behaviour of simple, very fast, low-power computing devices embedded in intensely recursive architectures. The economic and industrial impact of such a shift is potentially enormous.

In short, the goal of the Human Brain Project is to build a completely new ICT infrastructure for future neuroscience, future medicine and future computing that will catalyse a global collaborative effort to understand the human brain and its diseases and ultimately to emulate its computational capabilities.
[divider]

Source | Human Brain Project

Find us here

Get news from the CSGLOBE in your inbox each weekday morning

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors/source and do not necessarily reflect the position of CSGLOBE or its staff.

Paid content

The 10 Biggest Dangers Posed By Future Technology

It’s not easy predicting the future of technology. In the fifties it seemed a pretty much foregone conclusion that by 2015 we would all...

This Man One Ups Tesla By Inventing An Electric Car That Never Needs Charging

The concept of the electric car has been around for a very long time, and as with any other world revolutionizing technology, it’s taken...

People Can See Sound. Here Is How!

People can actually see SOUND. Researchers have found out that, in some cases, when the part of the brain devoted to sight is small,...

What's New Today

Georgia House Votes To Allow Citizens To Abolish Police Departments In The State

The Georgia House backed an effort on Friday to dissolve the Glynn County Police Department and any...

Leaked CDC document contradicts Pence claim that U.S. coronavirus cases ‘have stabilized’

Even as Vice President Mike Pence wrote in a Wall Street Journal op-ed published Tuesday that coronavirus...

Five bombshells about Trump from Bolton ‘s book

Excerpts from former national security adviser John Bolton ’s book about his time in the Trump administration...

Don’t Listen to Fox. Here’s What’s Really Going On in Seattle’s Protest Zone.

It seems I live in a city undergoing a “totalitarian takeover” that will lead to “fascist outcomes”...

MOST READ

What Is Agenda 21? Depopulation of 95% of the World By 2030

Most people are unaware that one of the greatest threats to their freedom may be a United Nations program which plans to depopulate 95%...

Complete List of BANKS Owned/Controlled by the Rothschild Family

What’s the significance of having a central bank within a country and why should you concern yourself, your family and colleagues? Central banks are illegally...

Bill Gates is the top target for coronavirus conspiracy theories

Bill Gates has been one of the most outspoken public figures about the coronavirus pandemic. But the...

The 10 Biggest Dangers Posed By Future Technology

It’s not easy predicting the future of technology. In the fifties it seemed a pretty much foregone conclusion that by 2015 we would all...

Final 100 Candidates Selected for One-Way Trip to Mars

Mars One, the controversial reality TV-funded project to send people on a one-way trip to Mars, has narrowed down its “astronaut selection process” to...

Starwars one step closer: DARPA ’s ‘death ray’ to begin field tests

The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has received government permission to field test its HELLADS laser weapon system. “The technical hurdles were daunting,...

New Machine Turns Food Waste Into Energy

An Israeli company, HomeBioGas, has created a portable machine that turns food waste into renewable energy for cooking or electricity, and its byproduct can...

‘Ready for WAR’ Kim Jong-un promises ‘POWERFUL RESPONSE’ after US Navy deployment to Korea

Kim Jong-un’s state-owned news agency KCNA claimed Trump’s deployment showed “reckless moves for invading” that had now “reached a serious phase”. It comes after Trump...

Indigenous Voices: A Call to Keep the Oil in the Ground

I walk a small path, surrounded by an infinite number of trees, plants and the scent of flowers. My lungs fill with pure, fresh...

Maximizing Human Sensorimotor Function

New assistive equipment to maximize human sensorimotor function A prototype for wearable equipment to support human motion has been developed at Hiroshima University, Japan. This...

French Cops Claim They’re Too Tired to Keep Policing Massive Protests

Months of mass demonstrations and violence linked to the Euro 2016 football tournament have left French police begging for mercy. A heated combination of protests...