A better understanding of the mammalian brain could help researchers discover how to more effectively treat diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Yet understanding the human brain is no small task: it comprises 100 billion neurons and more than 100 trillion synapses. To gain better insight into the brain's functionality, a Swiss research initiative, the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) Blue Brain Project (BBP), has invested in an HPE supercomputer called Blue Brain 5. It will use it to build biologically detailed digital models and simulations of the mammalian brain, starting with the rodent brain. Blue Brain 5 is based on the HPE SGI 8600 System and includes 372 compute nodes delivering 1.06 petaflops of peak performance.
The "deep artificial composer", or "DAC" for short, generates brand-new melodies that imitate traditional folk music of Irish or Klezmer origin. It does so without plagiarizing already existing ones, since melodies it writes are as original as those produced by a human composer. The results were presented in April at this year's edition of the Evostar conference. The DAC actually produces musical scores of melodies, symbolic music written using notation, and does not generate audio files. The deep artificial composer can produce complete melodies, with a beginning and an end, that are completely novel and that share features that we relate to style," says Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) scientists Florian Colombo who developed the artificial intelligence under the guidance of Wulfram Gerstner, director of the Computational Neuroscience Laboratory.
Over the past few years, surging focus on neuroscience and prospect of understanding brain functionality have assisted in addressing current technological limitations by utilising neural computation principles. Recognising this potentiality, the research community has launched many remarkable projects to support computational neuroscience, for studying the nervous system's information processing properties. An example of this is the Blue Brain Project to be held in Switzerland at Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne. This project focuses on simulation of ten thousand neurons in rat's brain by analysing the nervous system in detail.
Today in Switzerland, the 135 members of the Human Brain Project gathered to kick off the 10 year global project that will give us a deeper and more meaningful understanding of how the human brain operates. This project is considered the most advanced neuroscience project in the world. The Human Brain Project's is comprised of 130 research institutions throughout Europe and coordinated through the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EFPL). In the launch of the project, neuroscientists, doctors, computer scientists, and roboticists will begin to refine the project in across six research platforms including neuroinformatics, brain simulation, high-performance computing, medical informatics, neuromorphic computing and neurorobotics, each composed of technological tools and methods to ensure the project's objectives will be met. The scientists, through their research institutions, will set up and test the platforms over the next 30 months and in 2016, these platforms should be ready for testing by the Human Brain Project scientists and researchers from around the world.
Novel thinkers and pioneers in brain research, technology, healthcare and the economy will gather this month in Lausanne, Switzerland, for the third conference of The Brain Forum. The forum, on May 26 and 27, will also be attended by researchers, engineers, healthcare professionals, entrepreneurs, industrialists, investors, funding agencies and policy makers to advance the understanding of how the brain works and to accelerate the application and value of this knowledge in society and the economy. The event will be divided into two sections – with Day 1 focusing on entrepreneurship and innovation, and Day 2 on new advances in science and technology. During Day 1, the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Day, entrepreneurs and investors will share their expertise in translating science into business, and discuss their ideas for the future. The keynote lecture'Practical lessons in machine learning', will be presented by Greg Corrado, a senior research scientist working at the intersection of artificial intelligence, computational neuroscience, and scalable machine learning at Google Research, and will explore aspects of machine learning – upon which much of Google's work on language, speech, translation, visual processing, ranking and prediction relies.