For the past five years, Japan has been shadowed by China and the U.S. as far as computer performance goes. However, the country intends to make up for lost space by building the world’s fastest supercomputer by the end of the next year, 2017.
Nevertheless, Japan has to win the chance to build the supercomputer first. The bidding for the chance to build the supercomputer will end on December 8th, 2016.
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Japan wants to set itself apart from other nations, especially when it comes to artificial intelligence development. Hence, the AIBC will provide superior computing power to multiple academic institutions and companies.
The future AIBC creators are interested mainly about the massive advancements in the artificial intelligence department. However, the supercomputer could also provide some valuable information on personal computing systems and processing power.
In 1985, the Cray-2 supercomputer was the world’s fastest computing machine. However, in today’s terms, an iPhone 5 is nearly three times more efficient.
China is currently the record-holder for the most powerful computing system on the planet. The TaihuLight supercomputer can perform 93 petaflops operations per second. The petaflop is a measure particularly used for supercomputers that indicates the clock speed of the unit.
The National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology of Japan aims to make the AIBC run at incredible speeds, exceeding 130 petaflops operations per second. In contrast, the current fastest Japanese supercomputer runs at only 13.5 petaflops.
Japan’s Use for the AIBC
The Japanese intend to put their country at the forefront of the evergrowing technological markets once the scientists finish their project. The team of researchers will focus on boosting Japan’s technological field consisting of robotics, unmanned cars, and medical equipment.
However, the main objective will be to accelerate the research in the artificial intelligence department with emphasis on “deep learning”. Through deep learning, the scientists want to teach machines a high level of abstract thinking, mainly associated with human behavior.
A supercomputer does not come cheap. Hence, Japan is expected to spend approximately $173 million for the chance to build the AIBC, according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry. However, according to Ars Technica U.K., the Nippon government wants to reduce the costs by allowing companies to rent time on the AIBC for personal use.
Furthermore, it is estimated that the AIBC will run on 3 megawatts, as opposed to the TaihuLight which consumes no less than 15 megawatts of power. Ultimately, the Japanese will keep using Linux as the operating system for the AIBC, if they manage to win the auction.
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