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A team of researchers from the IBM Almaden Research Lab and the University of Nevada successfully simulated the neural activity of half of a mouse brain on a BlueGene L supercomputer that had 4,096 processors, each one of which used 256MB of memory.
What is a mouse brain, that we should wish to move towards simulating it? One half of a real mouse brain has about eight million neurons, each of which has up to eight thousand connections (synapses) with other neurons; it's a very complex system, with a staggering amount of processing power.
The simulation was so computationally intensive that the supercomputer could not even handle real-time mouse cogitation. The researchers ran the simulation at one-tenth speed for only ten seconds.
The researchers say that the simulation does not model the real structures of a mouse brain, although in smaller scale tests they had seen "biologically consistent dynamical properties" in the simulations.