Deadline looms for Intel's bumblebee processing

Just over ten years ago, Intel suggested that its processors would be able to match the compute ability of a bumble bee’s brain. A specific type of bumblebee, anyway, there are hundreds of kinds according to Intel’s Sean McGuire,  at today’s High Performance Computing briefing in London.

Intel is no bumble bee racist and must be careful not to generalise. There are just so many kinds of bees. Intel exclusively tells TechEye (and a roomful of hacks and hackettes) that there is lab research underway comparing the compute power between the brains of three pigeons, six rats and one bumblebee.

The deadline is ticking on Intel’s idea to deliver the processing power of a bumblebee. A designer told The Inquirer back when it was good that it would be possible be possible to compress enough transistors into one packaged chip, to equal the numbers of logical circuits of the bumblebee.

There’s only a month and a couple of days left for 2010.

So when will we see chips that match the bumble bee come into action? Will computing ever advance to that point?

The official word from McGuire is: “In the next three years we will be well past that.”