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New Computer Chip Could Significantly Speed up Data Operations

Sinead Donnelly

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computer chip

British start-up Blueshift Memory says the chip could lead to new drug discoveries, improve traffic congestion and even predict climate change.

Developed by British computing start-up Blueshift Memory, the new computer chip makes data operations to be 1,000-times faster and could significantly advance scientific discoveries.

According to its creators, the new chip could have major implications for DNA research, artificial intelligence design and could lead to new drug discoveries.

In addition, it could also potentially solve issues like traffic congestion and pollution in cities through optimising their infrastructure and layout, while even improving research into climate change.

A prototype of the memory chip is currently addressing the growing gap between the quicker progress of computer processing units (CPU) compared to memory chips – an issue known as “data tailback”.

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The disparity means that high-performance computers are unable to recognise their CPU potential when performing data-intensive operations, such as analysing large-scale databases. Operations that currently take hours or days, could be carried out by the new chip in a matter of minutes.

Peter Marosan, chief technology officer at Blueshift Memory said: “Imagine if you are a taxi driver but the town where you work is always changing, people are constantly swapping houses, and the shops and services are forever disappearing and reappearing in different places. That’s similar to the way in which data is organised in existing chips”.

He added that the chip will make everything “faster, easier and more effective”.

“Our design is the equivalent of replacing that with a stable, structured town where you already know where everything is and can find it much more quickly. It makes everything faster, easier and more effective,” he added.

The design allows for drastically more efficient modelling of data, meaning it would be useful for weather forecasting and predicting climate change.

Solving the data tailback challenge could also help improve the speed of search engines by as much as 1,000 times. However, developing the chip beyond the prototype model will be expensive and Blueshift Memory said it is currently seeking funding to continue development of the chip.

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Sinead Donnelly

Journalist

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