Chris Eliasmith of the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, led research published in the journal Science on a brain model called SPAUN - the Semantic Pointer Architecture Unified Network.
SPAUN lives inside a computer, can view images with a camera-like eye and can draw responses to questions. For example, show it the number “4” and it will write its own “4.” It can even mimic the style of the numeral.
Both in the brain and in SPAUN, neurons communicate by changing their voltages, and the pattern of these voltage “spikes” is what carries information from one cell to another, Eliasmith said. The receiving cell generates a voltage of its own if it receives a particular voltage.
SPAUN has 2.5 million spiking neurons. Neurons are the cells - the individual components - that make up the brain. The human brain has about 100 billion neurons, so there’s still a long way to go in terms of replicating its full capacity.Click through for more
A brain scan of white matter fibers, color-coded by direction. (Courtesy of the Laboratory of Neuro Imaging at UCLA and Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at MGH www.humanconnectomeproject.org / September5, 2012)
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