In contrast to the GCP, the Living Earth Simulator (LES) is still in the formative stages. It is intended to be a “knowledge accelerator” (analogous to a particle accelerator at CERN), but instead of particles, different branches of knowledge would be smashed together in order to reveal “the hidden laws and processes underlying societies..."  There are high hopes for the knowledge accelerator; it “would be able to predict the spread of infectious diseases, such as Swine Flu, identify methods for tackling climate change or even spot the inklings of an impending financial crisis.”

The LES is the brainchild of “an international group of scientists…aiming to create a simulator that can replicate everything happening on Earth - from global weather patterns and the spread of diseases to international financial transactions…” 

Needless to say, the technology necessary to achieve such a gargantuan project would be formidable – for one thing it would have to be powered by “an assembly of yet-to-be-built supercomputers capable of carrying out number-crunching on a mammoth scale.” Then it would need numbers to crunch in the form of data, lots of it “covering the entire gamut of activity on the planet.” In many ways, LES sounds like a high-tech version of the library in Jorge Luis Borges’ celebrated story “The Library of Babel”:

“When it was proclaimed that the Library contained all books, the first impression was one of extravagant happiness. All men felt themselves to be the masters of an intact and secret treasure. ..At that time a great deal was said about the Vindications: books of apology and prophecy which vindicated for all time the acts of every man in the universe and retained prodigious arcana for his future. Thousands of the greedy … rushed up the stairways, urged on by the vain intention of finding their Vindication. These pilgrims disputed in the narrow corridors, proffered dark curses, strangled each other on the divine stairways, flung the deceptive books into the air shafts, met their death... Others went mad ...      At that time it was also hoped that a clarification of humanity's basic mysteries -- the origin of the Library and of time -- might be found.”