Al-Rifaie on BBC

AISB Committee member and Research Fellow at Goldsmiths, University of London, Dr Mohammad Majid al-Rifaie was interviewed by the BBC (in Farsi) along with his colleague Mohammad Ali Javaheri Javid on the 6 November 2014. He was a...


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Rose wins the Loebne...

After 2 hours of judging at Bletchley Park, 'Rose' by Bruce Wilcox was declared the winner of the Loebner Prize 2014, held in conjunction with the AISB.  The event was well attended, film live by Sky News and the special guest jud...


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AISB Convention 2015

The AISB Convention is an annual conference covering the range of AI and Cognitive Science, organised by the Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour. The 2015 Convention will be held at the Uni...


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Yasemin Erden on BBC

AISB Committee member, and Philosophy Programme Director and Lecturer, Dr Yasemin J. Erden interviewed for the BBC on 29 October 2013. Speaking on the Today programme for BBC Radio 4, as well as the Business Report for BBC world N...


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Mark Bishop on BBC ...

Mark Bishop, Chair of the Study of Artificial Intelligence and the Simulation of Behaviour, appeared on Newsnight to discuss the ethics of ‘killer robots’. He was approached to give his view on a report raising questions on the et...


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AISB YouTube Channel

The AISB has launched a YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/AISBTube (http://www.youtube.com/user/AISBTube). The channel currently holds a number of videos from the AISB 2010 Convention. Videos include the AISB round t...


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Notice

AISB event Bulletin Item

CALL FOR PARTICIPATION: What Architecture for Neural Hardware?, 26th October, LONDON


Title: What Architecture for Neural Hardware? Speaker: Alex Rast, School of Computer Science, University of Manchester Wednesday 26th October - 16:00-17:30 - Room 343, Huxley Building, South Kensington campus, Imperial College, London, SW7 2A, UK

Abstract: Dedicated hardware is becoming increasingly essential to simulate emerging very large 
scale neural models. However, the question of what the appropriate architecture is for such neural 
hardware must take into account the fact that different research groups who might wish to use the 
hardware may have very different objectives. Previous generations of "neuroprocessor" and 
"neuromorphic" chips, tended either to hardwire a specific model into the chip, or offer no real 
advantage over conventional digital processing, meaning as a consequence their interest rarely 
extended beyond a narrow target audience (usually collaborators of the chip designers). A new 
approach: the "neuromimetic" architecture, maintains the neural optimisation of dedicated chips 
while offering FPGA-like universal configurability. As a leading example of this emerging 
architecture, SpiNNaker is a parallel multiprocessor employing an asynchronous event-driven model 
with configurable dedicated hardware on the chip to support real-time neural simulation. This makes
it capable of supporting multiple models of the neural dynamics, possibly operating simultaneously 
within the same system. Implementing these models on-chip uses an integrated library-based tool 
chain that allows a modeller to input a high-level description and use an automated process to 
generate an on-chip simulation. Results from simulation demonstrate SpiNNaker's ability to support 
multiple heterogeneous neural models at reasonable scale. SpiNNaker's asynchronous virtual 
architecture permits greater scope for model exploration, with scalable levels of functional and 
temporal abstraction, than conventional (or neuromorphic) computing platforms. The neuromimetic 
architecture opens an intriguing possibility that makes it a compelling choice: using the hardware
to establish useful abstractions of biological neural dynamics that could lead to a functional 
model of neural computation.

Biography: Alex Rast is a Research Associate with the SpiNNaker Group at the University of 
Manchester. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Manchester in 2010 for work on model 
libraries for configurable neural systems. Prior to joining the University of Manchester he worked 
at Inficom, Inc., a startup company doing research into advanced processing and communications 
technologies. His current research interests include extending and standardising neural model 
libraries including classical models such as the MLP, tool development for neural hardware, 
parallel and alternative hardware architectures, and programming tools for parallel systems.