[Haskell-cafe] Re: Performance: MD5

Andrew Coppin andrewcoppin at btinternet.com
Sun May 18 12:18:19 EDT 2008

Achim Schneider wrote:
> Andrew Coppin <andrewcoppin at btinternet.com> wrote:
>> I wonder what would happen if you instead had 
>> a vast number of very simple proto-processors connected in a vast 
>> network. [But I'm guessing the first thing that'll happen is that the 
>> data is never where you want it to be...]
> You're not thinking of neuronal networks, are you? The interesting
> thing there is that they unite code and data.

Damn; you've seen through my cunning disguise. ;-)

In all seriousness, it's easy enough to build an artificial neural 
network that computes a continuous function of several continuous 
inputs. But it's much harder to see how, for example, you'd build a text 
parser or something. It's really not clear how you implement flow 
control with this kind of thing. It's so different to a Turing machine 
is appears to render most of current computer science irrelevant. And 
that's *a lot* of work to redo.

Now, if you had a network of something a bit more complicated than 
artificial neurons, but less complicated than an actual CPU... you'd 
have... I don't know, maybe something useful? It's hard to say.

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