Computers might be smart, but they can’t learn new skills the way the human brain does. But a new book, Higher Intelligence, is challenging that conventional view and is set to revolutionize the world of computing.
The book, Higher Intelligence, tells the story of a 10-year, breakthrough R&D project to develop and prototype an ‘artificial brain’ chip that will help computers learn new skills to carry out tasks, rather than having to be programmed.
It is written by Perth-based computer expert Peter van der Made, The book is published by Vivid Publishing and is available as a printed book and as an e-book through www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com from the 7th of March.
“Producing a computer chip that can help computers learn for themselves is the key to the next generation of computers and artificial intelligence,” Mr van der Made says.
“Bill Gates said as much in 2004 when he told a class of engineering students: ‘If you invent a breakthrough in artificial intelligence so machines can learn, that is worth 10 Microsofts’.
“A year before he said those words, we had already started our quest to develop computer chips that can learn.
“In essence, we have now developed such a chip and made our prototype. The next stage for us will be to attract funding to get it to the market.”
Mr van der Made says the book details his decade-long quest to research and develop the artificial brain chip and the race by computing groups around the world to achieve something similar.
He says developing the artificial brain chip involved dumping the microprocessor concept for computing and instead studying how the human brain and nervous system operates.
“Current computers are great tools for number crunching, statistical analysis, or surfing the internet. But their usefulness is limited when it comes to artificial intelligence,” he says.
“The synthetic brain chip we have developed evolves through learning rather than being programmed. The fact that the human brain learns as it gathers and applies knowledge is one thing that has been overlooked in the development of past AI systems”
“This book presents a fresh look at the brain works, explains what intelligence really is beyond data, and gives an insight into future intelligent systems.“With that knowledge we can start building intelligent machines now, using technologies that are already available.”
Mr van der Made has some 40 years’ experience in computing and has developed several computing innovations, as well as holding five US and international patents.
A decade ago, he developed and patented the vCIS computer immune system which was sold to ISS (now IBM); and in 1982 he developed a high resolution graphics accelerator for PCs which was sold to Taiwan’s First International Computers.
He is Chief Scientist with the computing R&D firm, vWISP Pty Limited, based in building E3, Technology Park, Western Australia.