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In this paper, a metal-semiconductor-metal (MSM) based photodetector for multiple wavelength discrimination is fully introduced and analyzed. Its spectral response is programmable electrically through a set of low-voltage binary patterns that can be generated from CMOS circuits. Consequently, the wavelength reconfiguration time of the detector is set primarily by the electronics switching time, which is on the order of nanoseconds. Additionally, the spectral response of the detector can be arbitrarily shaped for any specific system need based on algorithms we introduce here. The nanosecond wavelength reconfigurability feature of the detector offers flexibility for designing high-efficiency wavelength reconfigurable optical networks.