Monday, July 29, 2013

Propeller Brain Three Year Anniversary

In the beginning: Brain Stem with BS2 and Prop

The first post made specifically for the Big Brain project was on August 5th, 2010, by humanoido. This led to a total of 1,763 posts which have received a total of 200,089 views at the Parallax site as of Monday, July 29th, 2013.

1st Big Brain board
On January 3rd, 2012, the Parallax Forum was filled and no longer had space for Big Brain posts. The project was moved to its own blog site. The current blogging site has added another 525 posts. The new site was up and running shortly after January 3rd, 2012 and has remained in full operation through 2016.

The first posted photo of a Big Brain board was on December 21st, 2010 (see photo above). It shows the robotic Brain Stem which was constructed first. The Brain Stem handles the nerve sending ability for robotic motor and various motion control functions. It uses a protected interface that communicates between the 5-volt level of the BASIC Stamp and the 3.3-volt level of the Propeller chip. A serial software interface joins processors and enables inter-board communications. The Lab's first Robotic Brain Stem is created from Parallax processors and designed to communicate motion mobility commands to a Giant Brain. The HBP Hybrid Brain Processor is programmed in two languages.

At the 1st year anniversary, a celebration party was held. Below is a portion of the original post. 
The first multi-brain was made from several Parallax Stamps placed into a humanoid robot built from Parallax Toddler robot parts. The Big Brain's official first post was on August 5th, 2010. The Big Brain uses Propeller chips. Out of respect to its heritage and to remain compatible with ten years of development, a BASIC stamp is designed into its Brain Stem. In building humanoid robots, they were consistently lacking in two things - a long lasting battery and a powerful brain. I wasn't interested in working with battery chemicals so I chose to develop a brain. The brain began by many suggestions from Parallax Forum members. The Brain has many supporting projects posted in the Brain thread. The most recent is a Brain Wave Monitor that can see and hear the thinking of Propeller chips. The Brain led to offspring, several smaller brains, even including a two prop brain in a jar that won Parallax's Project of the week...

At the second year anniversary, the Big Brain machine's state was described.
A working massive Machine Brain with over 100 Parallax Propeller chips. The Big Brain is simply a fun hobby project to run experiments and play with endless possibilities. Over 16,000 MIPS, over 3,200 I/O ports. 3 Partitions - the 3rd is a Magic Partition - holds any number of props from 1 to 50, allows removal & loan to other projects. Talk, sing, dream, learn, evolve, demonstrate Life, color TV, hearing, speech recognition, keyboard, mouse, 2 LCD displays, host boards, compatibility (Stamps, Props, PCs, Macs), sound out, mic in, stomach, Brain Base, Brain Spans, Brain Stem, EXOskeleton, multiple languages, over 100 x 64K distributed RAM/ROM, LED enabled, crystal/EEPROM supported, Mac/PC support computers, 3 TeraByte hard drives, Neural Matter Injector syncs & load props in parallel. Developed ParaP, AtOnce, EnhancedChip technologies - parallel-parallel operations, loading @ once, increase p^N, inject 100,000 Simplex Neurons. Expanding Array. Created modest RTOS - handles cogs, loading, timing, neural matter distribution. Cloning. Executes all-chip-multi-enumeration in a second. Expanding Arrays. HYBRID interface (Serial Communications, Daisy Chain Token Ring Topology, Prop to Prop, Parallel), RI Reduction Interface, AE Automatic Enumerator, Waveform Reliability Filter, No Parts Technology to reduce cost. Addendum: Medical doctor/ Human Genome Project. Offspring: Brain Child, Baby Brain, Bit Brain, and Brain in a Jar. Supporting Mac/AMD add 724 processors. TeraFLOPS computing power just under PetaFlops." 

For the 3rd year anniversary, it's become more challenging to describe all the programs conducted by the Big Brain Initiative.

Principally the Big Brain is doing its own projects which have become greater, more sophisticated and all encompassing. For example, a series of very powerful telescopes are now created, and numerous machines that can see with inference engines, molecular constructs, and gravity are in effect. The Humanoido Labs were internationally expanded to handle more of the Big Brain's work. Work progresses on a new Spin Brain and a manned space program has explored Near Space and deployed a Tiny Space Telescope. Recently a space flight was unexpectedly positioned above a rainbow and discovered that rainbows are shaped in a complete circle.

The Big Brain has already written a scientific paper, and has now progressed to writing a book about itself and Propeller circuits. The Big Brain was enhanced several times. The most recent added enhancements include Supertronic abilities and conventions. As of the third year, many of Big Brain's children, like Bit, have grown up. The Spin Brain is one example of a more mature brain.

The third year budget was greater than the previous two years, owing primarily to summing the increasing resources from NASA, related NASA agencies and continuing investments by Humanoido Labs to keep the Big Brain Initiative running. The largest part of the budget involves the overhead in keeping the Tropical Island Laboratory open and running, such as the cost in running and maintaining two air massive conditioners day and night used to maintain Big Brain operating temperatures within normal parameters, and the use of dehumidifiers and other equipment. Purchase of transportation this past year was also a priority to enable an immediate path to more expeditiously acquire Big Brain parts and related items.

Budget also involves continuing Big Brain projects like the human exploration of Near Space, space launches, acquiring equipment and adding on operations to include the Tiny Space Telescope, Radio Telescope and SETI program, test equipment and providing the time for additional operations, and Propeller and supercomputing R&D.

(The stretch of this time has analyzed black holes and looked at more dimensions beyond space and time, including the quantum arena, particulate entanglement, and numerous other effects.)

One continuing goal is to increase the number of processors inside the Big Brain, as the core density is directly proportional to the given intelligence level of the machine. The push is to lead from a processor density around 200,000 to one million in order to move from a semi-cognizant state to a fully aware state. The exact requirements to accomplish this are unknown at this time, and it's likely the Big Brain itself will be a part of the process in determining its own new state.

In a nutshell, three years of study and experimentation with the brain's propeller chip has led to more discoveries and greater enhancement. In the third year, the Propeller has moved far beyond its original specs, operates faster, can do more, and has more processors. It has more algorithms and has grown up to become a supercomputer, making discoveries about the Universe and beyond. It's now poised on horizon's edge of new science and technology. We cannot begin to fathom what will come next.

INDEX on current blog
1ST FORUM THREAD at the parallax site
CURRENT BLOGGER at the current big brain site
Download Big Brain 1st Anniversary Proceedings (offsite)