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Intelligent holographic databases


Barbastathis, George (1998) Intelligent holographic databases. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/1R63-9H50.


NOTE: Text or symbols not renderable in plain ASCII are indicated by [...]. Abstract is included in .pdf document. Memory is a key component of intelligence. In the human brain, physical structure and functionality jointly provide diverse memory modalities at multiple time scales. How could we engineer artificial memories with similar faculties? In this thesis, we attack both hardware and algorithmic aspects of this problem. A good part is devoted to holographic memory architectures, because they meet high capacity and parallelism requirements. We develop and fully characterize shift multiplexing, a novel storage method that simplifies disk head design for holographic disks. We develop and optimize the design of compact refreshable holographic random access memories, showing several ways that 1 Tbit can be stored holographically in volume less than 1 [...], with surface density more than 20 times higher than conventional silicon DRAM integrated circuits. To address the issue of photorefractive volatility, we further develop the two-lambda (dual wavelength) method for shift multiplexing, and combine electrical fixing with angle multiplexing to demonstrate 1,000 multiplexed fixed holograms. Finally, we propose a noise model and an information theoretic metric to optimize the imaging system of a holographic memory, in terms of storage density and error rate. Motivated by the problem of interfacing sensors and memories to a complex system with limited computational resources, we construct a computer game of Desert Survival, built as a high-dimensional non-stationary virtual environment in a competitive setting. The efficacy of episodic learning, implemented as a reinforced Nearest Neighbor scheme, and the probability of winning against a control opponent improve significantly by concentrating the algorithmic effort to the virtual desert neighborhood that emerges as most significant at any time. The generalized computational model combines the autonomous neural network and von Neumann paradigms through a compact, dynamic central representation, which contains the most salient features of the sensory inputs, fused with relevant recollections, reminiscent of the hypothesized cognitive function of awareness. The Declarative Memory is searched both by content and address, suggesting a holographic implementation. The proposed computer architecture may lead to a novel paradigm that solves "hard" cognitive problems at low cost.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Electrical Engineering
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Electrical Engineering
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Psaltis, Demetri
Thesis Committee:
  • Psaltis, Demetri (chair)
  • Yariv, Amnon
  • Scherer, Axel
  • Koch, Christof
  • Whitham, Gerald Beresford
  • Franklin, Joel N.
  • Perona, Pietro
  • Andersen, Richard A.
  • Shimojo, Shinsuke
  • Abu-Mostafa, Yaser S.
Defense Date:14 October 1997
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-03172008-142604
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:986
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:21 Mar 2008
Last Modified:31 Aug 2022 00:06

Thesis Files

PDF (Barbastathis_g_1998.pdf) - Final Version
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