...Despite their ability to perform thousands of tasks in the blink of an eye, none of these devices even come close to rivaling the computing capabilities of the human brain. At least not yet. But a Boise State University research team could soon change that.
...“By mimicking the brain’s billions of interconnections and pattern recognition capabilities, we may ultimately introduce a new paradigm in speed and power, and potentially enable systems that include the ability to learn, adapt and respond to their environment,” said Barney Smith, who is the principal investigator on the grant.
The project’s success rests on a memristor – a resistor that can be programmed to a new resistance by application of electrical pulses and remembers its new resistance value once the power is removed. Memristors were first hypothesized to exist in 1972 (in conjunction with resistors, capacitors and inductors) but were fully realized as nano-scale devices only in the last decade.
For my part, I just hope they are very careful about whose brains they decide to try to get the computers to mimic.