UD researcher wins funding to develop ‘brain-inspired’ computer chip

A researcher at the University of Dayton has been awarded a national grant to study artificial intelligence.
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A researcher at the University of Dayton has been awarded a national grant to study artificial intelligence.

A University of Dayton researcher has won his third National Science Foundation award to develop a brain-inspired computer chip that can learn by itself.

Researcher Tarek Taha is using a three-year, $440,000 National Science Foundation award to work toward this goal of further developing an artificial intelligence chip. The chip will be more secure, efficient and compact than current chips, the researcher said.

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“Anything small you need to be smart and powerful. The key is teaching the chip to learn and then apply it. One thing that differentiates us is we’re looking at learning on the chip,” Taha said. “We want to make these systems more autonomous, or independent of outside systems.”

“Deep learning” artificial intelligence chips are used in self-driving cars and could potentially be used in robots in the future, Taha said.

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The U.S. Postal Service already uses these type of computer chips to recognize handwritten digits. Taha said the chips are part of an emerging multi-billion dollar industry, which in the future could be ramped up to develop networks for applications such as Google voice translation.

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