Fiery pipeline explosion in B.C. raises possibility of natural gas shortage

first_imgStout urged another 300,000 customers in the Okanagan and southeastern B.C., to conserve even though their natural gas comes from Alberta.“We are asking them to cut back, too, because we can flow some of that gas past them and down here to the Lower Mainland. So we are asking everybody to chip in,” said Stout.The problems have the potential to flow south of the border.The damaged Enbridge pipeline connects to the Northwest Pipeline system which feeds Puget Sound Energy in Washington State and Northwest Natural Gas in Portland.Advertisement Puget Sound Energy had already issued a notice on social media urging its 750,000 natural gas customers to lower their thermostats and limit hot water use at least through Wednesday, a warning Stout seconded.“There is a potential impact on Seattle and north of Seattle,” he said.Currently Fortis has reserves still in the pipeline south of Prince George, in its liquefied natural gas storage tanks in the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island, and there is some gas flowing from Alberta through a pipeline in southern B.C., Stout said.Fortis expected to receive updates on the situation as Transportation Safety Board investigators and National Energy Board inspectors arrived to assess the damage and attempt to determine a cause.The company will update its customers as soon as it is in a position to offer something new, said Stout.Advertisement Chief Dominic Frederick with the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation said Enbridge contacted him shortly after the blast.“They had told me there was a gas building up in the underground. For some reason or another the gas had stopped flowing and it built up and it just exploded,” Frederick said.The Enbridge website describes its nearly 2,900 kilometre natural gas pipeline as capable of “transporting approximately 55 per cent of the gas produced in the province,” and “the backbone of B.C.’s natural gas industry since 1957.”(THE CANADIAN PRESS) No one was hurt when the fireball lit up the sky near the community of Shelley, and forced about 100 members of the nearby Lheidli T’enneh First Nation from their homes.An evacuation order had been downgraded Wednesday to the handful of homes near the explosion site.Witness Terry Teegee said the blast shook the area at about 5:30 p.m.“We thought it might have been a train crash or a low-flying jet,” he said.Zachary Semotiuk said he saw a “huge flash,” followed by a “raging fire,” that was easily visible above the treeline from several kilometres away.Advertisement PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. –  The company that distributes natural gas to homes around British Columbia is urging its customers to conserve after an explosion and fire on the pipeline that supplies most of the natural gas handled by Fortis B.C.The blast Tuesday shut down the Enbridge natural gas pipeline about 15 kilometres northeast of Prince George.Doug Stout, Fortis BC vice-president of external relations, said Wednesday that 85 percent of the gas his company feeds to homes and businesses is carried by the twinned pipeline that runs from northern B.C. to the United States border south of Vancouver.- Advertisement -One of the two lines ruptured and exploded but the second line is also shut while it’s being checked for damage, said Stout, prompting Fortis to warn of “decreased energy flow and potential loss of service.”“Turn down your thermostat if you are in a cold spot. Turn off your furnace if you can, if you are in Vancouver or a situation where you can do that. Minimize the use of hot water if you have a natural gas hot water tank … so we preserve the gas we have for as long as possible,” said Stout.As many as 700,000 customers in northern B.C., the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island could be directly affected by a shortage, he said.Advertisementlast_img read more

One killed, two injured in Winnetka crash

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Two others suffered minor to moderate injuries and were transported to area hospitals, said Brian Humphrey, a Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman. WINNETKA – A man was killed tonight when his speeding car overturned and hit at least two other vehicles at a backed-up intersection, police said. The crash was reported at about 9:10 p.m. at Mason Avenue and Sherman Way, said Sgt. Charles Swanson of LAPD’s Valley Traffic division. The driver, who was ejected from his car and died at the scene, was believed to speeding northbound on Mason Avenue when he approached Sherman Way, where several vehicles were stopped at a red light, Swanson said. “It looked like he was trying to drive in between,” he said. “And then he became airborne.”last_img


first_imgThe Grand Final of the Mr & Mrs to Be Competition takes place this Saturday night, the 9th of March at the Villa Rose Hotel in Ballybofey. One lucky couple will emerge as the winners of a Dream Wedding Package valued at approximately €15,000 and includes everything a bride & groom could need for their big day.Thirty couples took part in a number of heats which commenced in February with Nine couples making it through to Saturday night’s final. A number of local couples took part as well as couples from as far away as Kildare each hoping to win this much sought after prize. The couples taking part include: Ciara Loughran & Eamon Keyes from Omagh, Mary Coyle & Liam Marley from Dooish, Ciara McDaid & Alan Gilgunn from Letterkenny & Kildare, Jenna McConnell & Patrick McHugh from Castlederg, Theresa Doherty & Barry Gallen from Ballybofey & Castlederg, Goretti Houston & Michael Byrne from Ballybofey, Shauna Breen & Sean Gormley from Castlederg, Louise Coyle and Kevin Doherty from Ballybofey. Aisling Shiels & Denis McBride from Raphoe.The Prize includes a wedding reception at the 4 Star Villa Rose Hotel for 150 guests including drinks reception, 5-course meal with Wine and Evening Buffet as well as Wedding Photography from Gerard McHugh Photography, Cars by Gerard McGirr Wedding Services, Wedding Dress from McElhinney’s Bridal Rooms, Men’s Suit hire from Evolve Menswear, Videography by Arthur Lynch, Bridesmaids Dresses from High Society, Cake from Heidi’s Creative Cakes, Flowers from Ballybofey Florist’s, Entertainment from Mr Majestic & DJ John Bosco.This remarkable prize will be an unbelievable start to married life for one the lucky couple.  DONEGAL’S MR & MRS’ TO COMPETE FOR €15,000 GRAND PRIZE was last modified: March 7th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:BallybofeyMr and MrsVilla Roselast_img read more

Valencia goalie leads key victory

first_imgWith the Valencia Vipers Jr. B hockey team desperately needing a lift, it turned to newly acquired goalie Alex Midgalski. Midgalski, who was just acquired from the Tucson (Ariz.) Tilt in exchange for cash three weeks ago, settled down nicely after an inauspicious start to lead the Vipers to their first victory, a 6-2 road win against the Peoria (Ariz.) Coyotes on Oct. 20. The Coyotes scored on Midgalski 13 seconds into the game, but he took over the rest of the way, recording 35 saves. Valencia (1-6-1) lost the next two games of its three-game Arizona swing to Tucson on Oct. 21, and Phoenix on Sunday. Defenseman Kevin Lapp (Saugus) made the team as an alternate. Gale, who had a hat trick in the Peoria game, is the team’s leading scorer with 12 goals. Bruyere, who is the Western States Hockey League’s all-star team’s general manager, said Gale is a potential collegiate or Jr. A prospect. “(Gale) is a solid kid who has the opportunity to go play somewhere,” Bruyere said. “Hopefully, the all-stars will give him that exposure to get the opportunity that he deserves.” Football mentality: Reiner’s play will be limited the next two months because he also plays on Canyon’s football team. He is a junior defensive end. “He’s probably in better shape than anyone on the team because of his football,” Bruyere said. “Once his season’s over, we expect him to battle for the top spot.” (661) 267-7802 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECalifornia’s bungled $1 billion accounting system “We hadn’t had a chance to get him into a game and we wanted to see if he could right the ship for us,” Vipers coach Larry Bruyere said. “He shut them down, and that helped us get our first win.” Midgalski, who is from Santa Fe, N.M., was expendable because Tucson is loaded with talented goalies, including Jr. A/Div. I prospect Daren Hermiston. Midgalski will work in a three-goalie rotation with Paul Hart and Brice Reiner (Canyon High.) All-Star: Forward Chris Gale (Highland) will represent the Vipers Nov. 12-14 at the Jr. B All-Star Jamboree in Blaine, Minn. last_img read more

Rep. Ireland 1-5 Denmark: Christian Eriksen kills hosts’ World Cup dream

first_img1 The Boys in Green were mauled at the Aviva Stadium Christian Eriksen plundered a stunning hat-trick as Denmark shot the Republic of Ireland’s World Cup dreams down in flames to book their ticket to Russia in emphatic style.The Tottenham midfielder, who had been effectively shackled in Copenhagen on Saturday evening, took the second leg of the play-off tie by the scruff of the neck with two superb finishes either side of half-time before lashing home a third late on.In the process, he took his tally for the campaign to 11 goals, just two fewer than the Republic managed in their 12 games in the competition, before substitute Nicklas Bendtner converted a last-minute penalty.Denmark boss Age Hareide had forecast that old friend Martin O’Neill could not be as negative as he had been at the Parken Stadium, and was confident his players could exploit that.His assertion proved astute as despite taking an early lead through Shane Duffy’s header, Ireland were simply unable to find the right balance between attack and defence after Cyrus Christie’s own goal had restored parity.The organisation which had characterised the Republic progression to the play-offs disintegrated horribly and in the end, they were picked off in ruthless fashion.Having spent the 90 minutes in Copenhagen largely defending for dear life, there was an acceptance that they would have to be far more proactive if they were going to get past the Danes.It was no surprise when O’Neill once against ignored the clamour for 34-year-old Wes Hoolahan’s inclusion, and he could hardly have been more delighted when, with less than six minutes played, his team took the lead.Robbie Brady’s set-piece delivery has at times left something to be desired during the current campaign, but the free-kick he floated into the Danish penalty area caused panic and when striker Nicolai Jorgensen could only help the ball towards his own goal, Duffy rose to head past advancing goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel.However, that was never likely to be decisive and had it not been for keeper Darren Randolph, who reprised his heroics in Denmark with good saves from William Kvist and Pione Sisto in quick succession, the visitors would have been back in it.Ireland might have increased their lead with Daryl Murphy and James McClean going close, but the wheels came off in spectacular fashion inside three devastating minutes.Christie was desperately unfortunate to turn the ball into his own net after Andreas Christensen’s stabbed 29th-minute shot had come back off the post and hit him, but Harry Arter might have done better to prevent Sisto getting in the cross which handed the Chelsea defender his opportunity.The dust had barely settled when an Irish error was punished once again, Yussuf Poulsen robbing Stephen Ward before twice exchanging passes with Jorgensen, who teed up Eriksen to sweep a first-time shot past Randolph and in off the underside of the crossbar.O’Neill knew the time had come to throw caution to the wind and he did just that after the break, sending on playmaker Hoolahan and winger Aiden McGeady for defensive midfield duo Meyler and Arter.The Danes revelled in the extra freedom that afforded them and Randolph had to parry a well-struck Sisto effort after Eriksen had turned neatly to send him sprinting towards goal.Play switched rapidly from end to end with Duffy planting a firm header straight into Schmeichel’s arms before Eriksen ran half the length of the pitch unopposed only to see his shot blocked by the diving Randolph.However, the Middlesbrough keeper was exposed once again with 63 minutes gone as Eriksen effectively killed Irish hopes for good, receiving Sisto’s pass and expertly curling a left-foot shot inside the far post to make it 3-1.He completed his hat-trick by dispatching a rasping drive into the roof of the net as Ward faltered once again, and there was still time for Bendtner to have his say when he converted a last-minute penalty after being felled by Duffy.last_img read more

Audit: CDD agency needs total overhaul

first_img“This is not just about one particular program, this is about the CDD as a whole,” Chick said. “While the hardworking people of the CDD and its agencies are well-intentioned, the department needs a top-to-bottom reinvention. We must find a new and better way.” Benbow, who was named to the post earlier this year, said he has already begun to implement many of Chick’s recommendations. “We intensified our review of standards for our core services, upgraded data collection and have started a dialogue with peer agencies to compare the implementation of best practices,” Benbow said. (213) 978-0390160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! In her third audit of the city agency that oversees millions of dollars in state and federal grants, Controller Laura Chick called Tuesday for a complete overhaul in Community Development Department operations. “We have failed to properly and accurately evaluate program performance and we have been allowing vital programs to run on automatic pilot,” Chick wrote in her audit, which examined the agency’s Family Development Network program. “We are not asking the all important questions: Are we maximizing these precious dollars? Are we actually helping the most in need?” Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said he had not yet read all of the most recent audit, but had taken steps based on the findings of the earlier audits. “The controller has pointed out a problem we have with this agency, and that’s why I took steps to change its management by appointing Richard Benbow to make it more responsible and accountable,” Villaraigosa said. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’“Mr. Benbow has already begun the difficult work of redesigning the Community Development Department and its service delivery network.” Villaraigosa said he wants Benbow to “embrace” Chick’s recommendations and report back on changes. Chick said she appreciates what the mayor is doing, but feels that more is needed. “I admit that I’m an impatient person and I want to see these changes now,” she said. “I just don’t think we should tinker with the edges when we need to reform the whole system. “One of the biggest problems we’ve found is there is no real coordination of programs. It’s not just what the city is doing, but there is no coordination with the county or any other governmental agency.” Chick said her audit of the Family Development Network showed wide satisfaction among recipients but a lack of an effective citywide system to make sure it achieves its goal of making families self-sufficient. last_img read more

The biggest third round shocks in the history of the FA Cup

first_img FA Cup News 6 latest Sky Sports presenter apologises for remarks made during Neville’s racism discussion gameday cracker 6 on target revealed RANKED LATEST Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update Gerrard launches furious touchline outburst as horror tackle on Barisic sparks chaos Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury 6 Steve Watkin slots past David Seaman Shrewsbury 2-1 Everton, 2003Everton’s most successful captain of all time, Kevin Radcliffe, was the manager of Shrewsbury and was coincidentally drawn against his former side for their third round clash.And it seemed it was destined he would get one up on the Toffees – who were an exciting side with the likes of Wayne Rooney in their ranks.Nigel Jemson scored twice for the Shrews – first with a brilliant free kick and then with a header to send his side through.David Moyes’ side were powerless against Radcliffe’s men and the result was the shock of the round.Worcester 2-1 Liverpool, 1959In 1959, Phil Taylor’s Liverpool were drawn against Worcester in a match which would seemingly be a walkover for the Reds.But Worcester had other ideas and implemented a high pressing game to throw Liverpool off guard.The tactic paid off and the Blues scored in either half to the dismay of the players in red.A late consolation was not enough to save their blushes – and the papers were all over Liverpool’s performance.Taylor left his position later on in the year to be replaced by Bill Shankly.Hereford United 2-1 Newcastle United, 1972Non-league underdogs had already defied the odds when they fought to replay against top division Newcastle in the first match.And a late Malcolm MacDonald looked to have sent Newcastle through.However a 35 yard Ronnie Radford strike sent Edgar Street into frenzy and the tie into extra time.Ricky George’s winner put his name in the competitions folklore and produced one of the greatest Cup upsets ever. appointed huge blow Most Read in Football Giggs and Co were powerless to prevent the Leeds defeat Sutton 2-1 Coventry, 1989This giant killing isn’t just seen as the biggest shock in the history of the FA Cup but one of the biggest ever.Coventry were in the top division and had won the Cup 18 months before,  whilst their opponents Sutton occupied a spot in the Conference.Sutton took the lead shortly before the break thanks to a Tony Rains header before Coventry’s David Phillips levelled shortly after the break.In a moment of monumental significance, Matthew Hanlan’s strike cemented Sutton’s place in history.It took 24 years before a top division side were beaten by a non-league side again.Manchester United 0-1 Leeds United, 2010This match-up was once a titanic clash, but in 2010 it was Sir Alex Ferguson’s Champions League finalists against League One side Leeds.No one could have predicted a third round upset for the Red Devils – who had won the FA Cup six times under their legendary boss.But Jermaine Beckford stunned Old Trafford into silence in the 19th minute to give the Peacocks a famous victory. scrap center_img BEST OF 6 Beckford scored the winner for Leeds against Manchester United The FA Cup returns this weekend Steve Round reveals how Mikel Arteta convinced him to join Arsenal staff Holders Chelsea begin their defence at home to Nottingham Forest, as Premier League champions Manchester City welcome Rotherham.Liverpool face an all-Premier League affair at Wolves and Manchester United host Reading.As the Premier League’s top clubs prepare for their first game of the competition- explores the most memorable third round shocks in FA Cup history.Bournemouth 2-0 Manchester United, 1984Manchester United were the holders of the competition and came up against a third tier Bournemouth side led by the new and inexperienced Harry Redknapp.The Cherries went toe-to-toe with the English giants in a hard-fought battle for over an hour, before goals from Milton Graham and Ian Thompson gave Redknapp’s side an unthinkable 2-0 lead.United, who had a star-studded line-up with some of the finest players in the game including Bryan Robson, were powerless to prevent the defeat in one of the greatest shocks the Cup has ever seen.In the aftermath of the game, Bournemouth goalscorer Ian Thompson described the victory as an “out-of-body experience.”Wrexham 2-1 Arsenal, 1992Welsh legend Mickey Thomas played for a whole host of top English clubs, including Chelsea and Manchester United.But he is best known for his incredible 82nd minute free-kick which levelled the scores in this FA Cup tie.The strike gave the underdogs the momentum to push on for victory when Steve Watkin coolly slotted home against a hapless David Seaman.Then Arsenal manager George Graham described the defeat as his “lowest moment in football” – before guiding the Gunners to Cup glory in the following season. Top scorer in 2019: Messi, Mbappe and Sterling trailing Europe’s top marksman The average first-team salaries at every Premier League club in 2019 6 SORRY Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ Havant and Waterlooville 4-2 Swansea, 2008In one of the more recent shocks, Swansea were stunned by Blues Square South side Havant and Waterlooville.Garry Monk’s own-goal gave the little league side the lead and they quickly scored two more to go three-up.The visitors then replied with two goals of their own and Leon Britton even missed a penalty to level up the score.But the Welsh side could not complete the fightback and Tom Jordan’s header sealed a historic victory for the semi-pro Hampshire side.They were then drawn with Liverpool in the fourth round and remarkably led twice in the game – but eventually lost in a 5-2 defeat to end their cup run.Stevenage 3-1 Newcastle, 2011This was another one of the biggest upsets in recent years.Fourth tier side Stevenage were enjoying their first season of league football when they were drawn against Alan Pardew’s Magpies in the third round.Incredibly the Boro weren’t fortunate at all – they dominated possession and had more shots then the Premier League giants.Goals from Stacey Long, Michael Bostwick and Peter Winn sealed a famous win for the Broadhall Way side.The defeat for Newcastle meant the Tyneside club became only the fourth top-flight team to lose to fourth division opposition. LOOKING GOOD Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade The oldest competition in football returns this weekend as clubs from all over the country prepare for the third round of the FA Cup.Arsenal have a trip to Bloomfield Road to face Blackpool while north London rivals Tottenham will travel to League Two side Tranmere. Ronnie Radford of Hereford after his side’s famous win Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT 6 Chelsea unveil stunning retro kit to mark 50 years since first FA Cup triumphlast_img read more

Raphoe woman wins top Volunteer Award

first_imgA local football club hero from Donegal has won a Volunteer Ireland Award 2018. Sinead Kelly is a tireless volunteer with Raphoe Town Football Club and a passionate promoter of girls in sport.Sinead established a successful initiative called ‘Soccer Sisters’ to encourage more girls to take up football. As well as being a coach, Sinead has positioned the club in the heart of the community building strong and positive links with local schools and clubs and making an impact in local community initiatives. Sinead’s efforts and many hours of planning and organising were rewarded last week as she was announced as the overall winner of the Sport and Recreation award the Volunteer Ireland Awards 2018.Engineer Sharon Clarke from Donegal was also shortlisted for an award in the ‘Children and Youth’ category.Sharon ClarkeSharon is an employee with Seagate Technology in Derry and has spent the past 5 years promoting awareness of STEM and empowering female engineers in her workplace.On 7th December 2018, at gala awards ceremony in Dublin, eleven category winners were announced along with the Christine Buckley Volunteer of the Year. Mary Fitzgerald from Co. Clare was named Christine Buckley Volunteer of the Year 2018 for her support for those suffering domestic abuse in the area. Raphoe woman wins top Volunteer Award was last modified: December 10th, 2018 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

On Alltop and RSS For The Masses

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting I like Alltop. It is a simple app, so I think Mike Arrington had a valid point there. But it’s effective and it is definitely an easy scan for people looking for social news to read. It won’t satisfy many early adopter types, who will continue to use the likes of Google Reader and Newsgator for ‘heavy lifting’ of RSS feeds. And early adopters will continue to use the likes of Netvibes and Pageflakes for their Alltop-like reading – i.e. when you just want to scan a bunch of your top news sources – because those apps are much more functional and configurable than Alltop. Will Alltop entice mainstream readers to follow blogs and use RSS more? I hope it does, but there is still a psychological factor to overcome in getting mainstream people to read blogs. While some people recognize that blogs are as much a part of the news ecosystem as mainstream media these days, many others still see blogging as a way to let the world know what you had for breakfast. So a service like Alltop is unlikely to change the latter attitude, which is unfortunately the most common one (not helped by mainstream media, which often portrays blogs as superficial social networking sites).RSS for the masses? Not sure I’d go that far, but Alltop is a nice, simple service that you can start pointing your non-geek friends and family to. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… richard macmanus Today Alltop, an aggregator of RSS feeds, launched. It’s a very similar product to one of my daily refreshes, OriginalSignal. Only Alltop covers a much broader range of topics, 40 in total. Alltop’s selection of feeds is savvy and wide-ranging – and I’m not just saying that because ReadWriteWeb is the first feed listed in ‘Social Media‘ (although I am very pleased about that!). The service is being positioned as ‘RSS for the masses’, because it makes it very easy for non-tech people to find new sources to read.Founder Guy Kawasaki described Alltop as “an ‘online magazine rack’ that displays the news from the top publications and blogs.”There have been varying reactions to Alltop. Mike Arrington at TechCrunch wrote that Alltop is “just a big pile of nothing.” I think he was referring to the fact that it is relatively easy to create an app like Alltop – and he referenced the Web 2.0 Workgroup homepage (developed by Fred Oliveira a few years ago) as an example. Others think that Alltop is filling a need, for mainstream people to get into the RSS reading scene. Mick Liubinskas wrote that “I can see my wife and even my dad using it.” Mick said that “they are now both looking for stuff to read and are ready to venture outside of the news sits they know, but they are not quite sure where to start.” Chris Shipley of GuideWireGroup came to a similar conclusion to Mick, noting also that the sourcing of material is an important part of Alltop. Chris said that Alltop is “a collection of the stuff that top bloggers, Twitterers, and social media buffs like to read. It’s not the wisdom of crowds, so much as the wisdom of the most engaged social media advocates.” I agree with Chris that the content selection on Alltop is smart and savvy – these are quality blogs. Certainly Alltop has a much broader set of sources than its inspiration, PopURLs (a collection of popular, but slightly cliched by now, blog and social media sources). Tags:#Product Reviews#web Related Posts last_img read more

Neuromorphic Chips: Using Animal Brains as a Model for Computing

first_imgStrong interest in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning is driving rapid advances into the basic elements of computers are architected.  GPUs are one example — a GPU consists of a large number of processor cores that can all work in parallel and are tuned to be very performant when operating on very specific kinds problems, like image processing.  While originally developed primarily for graphic processing, GPU’s are increasingly being used for other computationally intensive problems in machine learning.Our current concept for how a computer works was first conceived by Turing and von Neumann in the 1940’s.  In the von Neumann model for computing, there is a central processing unit or CPU that uses internal registers for processing data.  The CPU has random-access to memory and interprets the data retrieved as as either instructions or data.Geoffrey Burr, a principal research staff member at IBM Research, said that “for many problems going forward, (von Neumann hardware) will still be the right solution.  But there’s an enormous amount of work that needs to be done to make those (intelligent-like) algorithms work in software on regular von Neumann hardware. The problem is that you need this steady stream of data through the bus. So, you’re spending a lot of energy and time shipping that data in and out. It would be ideal to bring the computation to where the data is.  That’s where we see the opportunities for these neuromorphic systems. It will accelerate machine learning.”Neuromorphic computers offer an alternative design to the von Neumann model.  Traditional chips are reaching the limit of Moore’s law of performance and neuromorphic chips offer a path for improved performance.  Neuromorphic design uses biological brains as a model and  is expected to be very useful for applications like artificial intelligence.In 2015, IBM released information about research into a neuromorphic computer built from 48 chips, 4096 cores and 48 million connections, about the number of connections that are found in the brain of a rat.Brian Van Essen, a computer scientist from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, said that “what does a neuro-synaptic architecture give us? It lets us do things like image classification at a very, very low power consumption.”But wide-spread use of this kind of a neuromorphic chip may be a long ways away. Yann LeCun, researcher at NYU, commented that “I’m all in favour of building special-purpose chips for running neural nets. But I think people should build chips to implement algorithms that we know work at state of the art level.  This avenue of research is not going to pan out for quite a while, if ever. They may get neural net accelerator chips in their smartphones soonish, but these chips won’t look at all like the IBM chip. They will look more like modified GPUs.”last_img read more