NVIDIA Tesla V100 gains widespread acceptance

NVIDIA’s Volta architecture is leaving quite an impression. According to a NVIDIA press release issued at SC17, the Volta-based NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU is available through every major computer maker and chosen by every major cloud to deliver artificial intelligence (AI) and high performance computing.

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Singapore’s AI agenda gets double boost!

NVIDIA Fellow Dr David Kirk
NVIDIA Fellow Dr David Kirk delivers the keynote address at the NVIDIA AI Conference.

Singapore’s aim to be an artificial intelligence (AI) hub has been boosted with two initiatives — the setting up of a shared AI platform for researchers and the awarding of scholarships to develop AI talents.

At the NVIDIA AI Conference in Singapore yesterday, NVIDIA and Singapore’s National Supercomputing Centre (NSCC) agreed to establish a platform to bolster AI capabilities among its academic, research and industry stakeholders and in support of AI Singapore (AISG), a national programme set up in May to drive AI adoption, research and innovation in Singapore.

Called AI.Platform@NSCC, it will provide AI training, technical expertise and computing services to AISG, which brings together all Singapore-based research and tertiary institutions, including the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore University of Design and Technology (SUTD), Singapore Management University (SMU), as well as research institutions in the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR).

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Tantalising line-up of speakers at NVIDIA AI Conference

More than 1,000 participants attending the NVIDIA AI Conference in Singapore next week are in for a treat as the organisers are bringing in a tantalising line-up of speakers.

The two keynote speakers are Dr David B Kirk, NVIDIA Fellow and inventor of more than 60 patents and patent applications relating to graphics design; and Dr Wanli Min, AI scientist of Alibaba Cloud, who will touch on A Revolutionary Road to Data Intelligence.

Besides these two, there are special guest-of-honour Chng Kai Fong, Managing Director of Singapore’s Economic Development Board, and a panel discussion on AI for the Future of Singapore Economy.

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Robotaxis on the way

No steering wheels, pedals or mirrors. Sounds like science fiction but the fully autonomous robotaxi is on its way with the launch of a new system that NVIDIA has codenamed Pegasus.

Pegasus extends the NVIDIA Drive PX AI computing platform to handle Level 5 driverless vehicles. NVIDIA DRIVE PX Pegasus delivers over 320 trillion operations per second — more than 10 times the performance of its predecessor, NVIDIA DRIVE PX 2, announced Jensen Huang, Founder and CEO of NVIDIA at his keynote address at GTC Europe in Munich.

Robotaxis powered by NVIDIA DRIVE PX Pegasus will have interiors that feel like a living room and arrive on demand to safely whisk passengers to their destinations, bringing mobility to everyone, including the elderly and disabled.

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China’s tech giants bet on NVIDIA Volta

China’s top technology companies are betting big on the NVIDIA Volta platform.

Alibaba Cloud, Baidu, and Tencent are incorporating NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU accelerators into their data centres and cloud-service infrastructures to accelerate AI for a broad range of enterprise and consumer applications.

At the heart of the new Volta-based systems is the NVIDIA V100 data centre GPU. Built with 21 billion transistors, it provides a 5x improvement over the preceding NVIDIA Pascal architecture P100 GPU accelerators, while delivering the equivalent performance of 100 CPUs for deep learning. This performance surpasses by 4x the improvements that Moore’s law would have predicted over the same period of time.

Inspur, Lenovo and Huawei are using the NVIDIA HGX reference architecture to offer Volta-based accelerated systems for hyperscale data centres. Using HGX as a starter “recipe,” original equipment manufacturer and original design manufacturer partners can work with NVIDIA to more quickly design and bring to market a wide range of qualified GPU-accelerated AI systems for hyperscale data centres to meet the industry’s growing demand for AI cloud computing.

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NVIDIA to hold first AI-focused conference in Singapore in October

With artificial intelligence (AI) being a hot topic this year, NVIDIA is organising its first AI-focused regional conference in Singapore on October 23 and 24.

The event will be held in two parts with the first day focusing on Deep Learning Institute (DLI) workshop where participants will received hands-on training on deep learningl and the second day filled with keynote addresses, panel discussion and three tracks. It is targeted at data scientists and senior decision makers in the field of AI in both public and private sectors.

“Singapore is aiming to be the world’s first smart nation and AI is playing a critical role. NVIDIA is well positioned to help drive the government’s Smart Nation initiative with the development of solutions based on AI. Our GPUs are making headlines across the world by enabling many breakthroughs in various industries using deep learning,” said Raymond Teh, Vice President of APAC sales and marketing at NVIDIA.

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NVIDIA and Indonesia university set up first AI R&D centre in Jakarta

Launch completed (from left): Raymond Teh of NVIDIA, Sanny Hadinata of Tech Data, Bernard Gunawan of BINUS Nusantara, Hengkie Kastono of HPE, Bens Pardamean of BINUS, and Bahtiar Saleh Abbas of BINUS.

NVIDIA has teamed up with BINUS University and Kinetica to establish the first artificial intelligence (AI) research and development (R&D) centre in Indonesia.

Located at the university’s Anggrek Campus, the centre will support BINUS University’s aim to be the premier R&D hub for Al in Indonesia. Leveraging the power of NVIDIA’s GPUs, it will be a showcase of the commercial potential of GPU-accelerated deep learning applications.

“Today, we stand at the beginning of the AI computing era, ignited by a new computing model, GPU deep learning. This new model — where deep neural networks are trained to recognise patterns from massive amounts of data — has proven to be ‘unreasonably’ effective at solving some of the most complex problems in computer science. In this era, software writes itself and machines learn. Soon, hundreds of billions of devices will be infused with intelligence. AI will revolutionise every industry. NVIDIA provides the products and solutions to power this revolution,” said Raymond Teh, Vice President of APAC Sales and Marketing of NVIDIA.

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ICML: Gathering of the brightest in AI

“I’m amazed at the quality of the papers presented. The project teams’ line of thinking and breakthrough concepts are refreshing,” exclaimed a leading artificial intelligence (AI) scientist at the International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML) in Sydney.

International Convention Centre Sydney was a massive hive of activities as 3,000 of the world’s top researchers, developers and students in AI gathered for ICML. The participants moved rapidly from one workshop to another and took great interest in the exhibition booths of top deep learning proponents such as NVIDIA, Google and Facebook.

With so many bright young talents. the event proved to be a good fishing ground for vendors as they held recruitment interviews at their booths, as well as posted openings on the board.

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NVIDIA Tesla V100 surprise for world’s top AI researchers

Fifteen top AI research institutions of the NVIDIA AI Labs programmes were each presented with the Volta-based NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPU accelerator.

They were participating in Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR) conference in Honolulu.

“AI is the most powerful technology force that we have ever known. I’ve seen everything. I’ve seen the coming and going of the client-server revolution. I’ve seen the coming and going of the PC revolution. Absolutely nothing compares,” said Jensen Huang, CEO of NVIDIA.

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AI takes centrestage at ICML in Sydney

NVIDIA is bringing its wealth of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions and expertise to the International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML) in Sydney.

Held at Sydney International Convention Centre from August 6 to 11, the event is expected to attract up to 3,000 participants, primarily faculty, researchers and PhD students in machine learning, data science, data mining, AI, statistics, and related fields.

The NVIDIA booth (Level 2, The Gallery, Booth #4) will feature many firsts in Australia, such as demos on 4K style transfer, a deep neural network to extract a specific artistic style from a source painting, and then synthesises this information with the content of a separate video; self-driving auto using the Drive PX2 AI car computing platform; Deepstream SDK that simplifies development of high performance video analytics applications powered by deep learning; and NVIDIA Isaac, the AI-based software platform lets developers train virtual robots using detailed and highly realistic test scenarios.

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Beat traffic jam with new Audi A8

At the inaugural Audi Summit in Spain, Audi revealed that its flagship 2018 A8 features a multitude of high-tech wizardry powered by NVIDIA.

“The car of the future will make its occupants’ life easier with the help of artificial intelligence (AI),” declared Rupert Stadler, Chairman of the Board of Audi, as he introduced such A8 features as Audi AI Traffic Jam Pilot, Remote Park Pilot, Natural Voice Control and Swarm Intelligence.

The A8 is packed with NVIDIA powered systems, including revolutionary new user interfaces, a new infotainment system, a new virtual cockpit, and new rear seat entertainment options.

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NVIDIA invests in Deep Instinct

NVIDIA is investing in Deep Instinct, an Israeli-based startup that uses deep learning to thwart cyber attacks.

Deep Instinct uses a GPU-based neural network and CUDA to achieve 99 percent detection rates, compared with about 80 percent detection from conventional cyber security software. Its software can automatically detect and defeat the most advanced cyber attacks.

“Deep Instinct is an emerging leader in applying GPU-powered AI through deep learning to address cybersecurity, a field ripe for disruption as enterprise customers migrate away from traditional solutions. We’re excited to work together with Deep Instinct to advance this important field,” said Jeff Herbst, Vice President of Business Development of NVIDIA.

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Volvo, Autoliv to roll out NVIDIA-based self-driving cars by 2021

Volvo Cars and Autoliv are teaming up with NVIDIA to develop advanced systems and software for AI self-driving cars. The three companies will work together along with Zenuity — a newly-formed automotive software development joint venture equally owned by Volvo Cars and Autoliv — to develop next-generation self-driving car technologies.

Production vehicles built on the NVIDIA DRIVE PX car computing platform are planned for sale by 2021.

“Artificial intelligence (AI) is the essential tool for solving the incredibly demanding challenge of autonomous driving. We are building on our earlier collaboration with Volvo to create production vehicles that will make driving safer, lead to greener cities and reduce congestion on our roads,” said  Jensen Huang, Founder and CEO of NVIDIA, at a keynote address at  Automobil Elektronik Kongress.

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Taiwan: Home of GeForce!

At the keynote of NVIDIA AI Forum, NVIDIA CEO and Founder Jensen Huang called “Taiwan is the home of NVIDIA’s GeForce system”.

Video gaming is a US$100 billion industry and “GeForce PC gaming is the number one platform, nearly 200 million GeForce installed base,” declared Huang.

He announced the new NVIDIA Max-Q platform which lets gaming notebook makers produce faster, slimmer and quieter machines.

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Computex starts tomorrow!

Computex, Asia’s biggest technology show and one of the largest in the world, will kick off in Taipei tomorrow and end on June 3. Spread across Taipei World Trade Centre halls in Xinyi District and the Nangang Exhibition Center, this year’s show is themed “Building global technology ecosystems.

Dell, Intel, Microsoft, and NVIDIA are among the top global companies taking part in Computex this year.

Setting up in progress in TWTC Hall 1.

 

Singapore to focus on 4 technology areas

Singapore will be focusing on four technology areas to build the foundation for its digital transformation. These are artificial intelligence (AI) and data science, cybersecurity, immersive media, and Internet of Things and future communications infrastructure.

At the opening of Infocomm Media Business Exchange at Marina Bay Sands Singapore Convention Centre, Minister for Communications and Information Dr Yaacob Ibrahim noted that “they are exciting fields with bright prospects in their own right, and they have great potential to transform other industries and enhance people’s lives”.

Artificial Intelligence and Data Science
The nation has established AI.SG, a national programme with funding of up to S$150 million to boost Singapore’s AI capabilities.

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Deeper into AI

The keynote address at Google I/O yesterday showed that Google is much more than just a search company. It is becoming more artificial intelligence (AI). Google is specifically using deep learning to help in many areas of everyday life.

 

Here are some as shared on Google’s blog post:

Google Assistant can help answer your questions and find information—but it can also help you get all kinds of useful things done. Today we’re adding a few more:

  • Schedule new calendar appointments and create reminders. Starting today on Google Home, you can schedule appointments and soon you’ll also be able to add reminders. Since it’s the same Google Assistant across devices, you’ll be able to get a reminder at home or on the go.
  • Make your home smarter. We now have 70+ smart home partners supporting the Google Assistant across Google Home and Android phones, including August locks, TP-Link, Honeywell, Logitech, and LG.

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Enhancing public safety

Motorola Solutions has unveiled highly advanced technology solutions to enhance the capabilities of nation-wide public safety networks at Critical Communications World 2017 in Hong Kong. These include mission-critical radio technologies, specialised software, mission critical broadband, command centre solutions, and future innovation concepts.

Growth in both mission-critical communications and mobile broadband technologies is fuelled by demand for end-to-end, interoperable solutions combining the most needed elements of voice, data and multimedia communication.

“Public safety customers in Asia Pacific are among the most technically advanced in the world and are continuing their rapid adoption of mission-critical mobile intelligence services and smart technologies. This is enabling them to filter and analyse the vast amounts data available today so they can make better and faster decisions to protect our communities,” said Iain Clarke, Corporate Vice President and General Manager, Asia Pacific, of Motorola Solutions.

Deep Instinct is Most Disruptive Startup

Hundreds of thousands of computers in 150 countries have been hit by the WannaCry ransomware. While users are scampering around trying to fix their computers, the top of mind question is whether this could have been avoided. And if artificial intelligence could have predicted and prevented such an attack.

At GPU Technology Conference (GTC) in San Jose, California last week, Israeli firm Deep Instinct won the Most Disruptive Startup category in NVIDIA’s Inception Award. The firm is the first to use AI to predict and prevent malware attacks.

According David Eli, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Deep Instinct, more than a million new malware threats are released daily, but most antivirus software focuses on known threats.

His firm’s graphics processing unit (GPU)-accelerated deep learning software detects malware in real time. Trained on hundreds of millions of files, the neural network learns to detect more threats and then uses its experience to predict new attacks.

“Winning this prize is the ultimate recognition from the deep learning industry because deep learning and NVIDIA are synonymous,” said Eli.

This is the inaugural year of NVIDIA’s Inception Awards, which recognises startups in three categories – Hottest Emerging, Most Disruptive and Social Innovation. Winners received significant cash prizes and graphics processing unit (GPU) hardware to further accelerate their activities.

Emerging out of stealth mode in November 2015, Deep Instinct’s patent-pending application of deep learning to cybersecurity results in cutting-edge capabilities of unmatched accurate detection and real-time prevention.

Leveraging the capabilities associated with deep learning, Deep Instinct provides instinctive protection on any device, platform, and operating system. Zero-day and APT attacks are immediately detected and blocked before any harm can happen to the enterprise’s endpoints, servers, and mobile devices.

“Deep Instinct relies on end-to-end deep learning for all its advanced malware detection and prevention capabilities. The deep neural network is trained on hundreds of millions of malicious and legitimate files. To handle such large-scale training, Deep Instinct developed its proprietary deep learning infrastructure directly on NVIDIA’s GPU machines,” said Eli.

“The powerful capabilities of NVIDIA GPUs enable us to perform our training at a substantially faster speed compared to CPUs: while training the Deep Instinct brain on NVIDIA’s GPUs takes a little over a single day of training, the same task on CPUs would take more than three months,” he added.

“We are thrilled to be recognised by NVIDIA for what we believe is a groundbreaking application of GPUs. Being able to leverage powerful technological capabilities to apply deep learning to cybersecurity empowers enterprises with unprecedented, real-time protection from the next unexpected attack,” said Guy Caspi, Chief Executive Officer of Deep Instinct.

GTC draws the big guns!

As a sign of its coming of age, the GPU Technology Conference (GTC) held annually in San Jose, California since 2009, is no longer a niche event but one that is drawing the who’s who of the technology industry.

NVIDIA’s shift of focus from being a visual computing company to an AI company has certainly played a big part in the expansion of the conference. It has attracted around 50 sponsors and 150 exhibitors on top of more than 7,000 participants.

However, it’s not the number of sponsors and exhibitors but rather the quality that is worthy of attention. The line-up of technology firms includes luminaries such as Adobe, Alibaba, Amazon, Autodesk, Cisco, Cray, Dell EMC, DreamWorks Animation, IBM Watson, Lenovo, Microsoft, Samsung Electronics, Verizon Labs, VMware, and Yahoo Research.

With AI being such a prime mover of autonomous vehicles, it is also not surprising that leading names in the automotive industry were also present — BMW Group, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Honda Research Institute, and Mercedes-Benz R&D North America.

Amid the various booths showcasing VR technologies was one by NASA Ames Research Center, which showed a VR demonstration on Mars.

Toyota cruises with NVIDIA Drive PX2

Prime mover powered by NVIDIA Drive PX2.

Toyota, one of the world’s largest automakers and renowned for its high standards and priority on safety, has picked NVIDIA Drive PX for its autonomous vehicles. It will use the AI car computer platform to power advanced autonomous driving systems planned for market introduction within the next few years

Engineering teams from the two companies are already developing sophisticated software that will enhance the capabilities of Toyota vehicles, enabling them to better understand the massive volume of data generated by sensors on the car, and to handle the broad spectrum of autonomous driving situations.

“Toyota has worked on autonomous driving technologies for over 20 years with the aim of reducing traffic fatalities to zero as an ultimate goal, achieving smoother traffic, and providing mobility for all. Through this collaboration, we intend to accelerate the development of autonomous driving systems that are even more safe and capable,” said Ken Koibuchi, Executive General Manager of Toyota.

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Finally, the Big Bang for AI!

I am AI opening video at GTC 2017 keynote.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is not new. In fact, it has so many false starts over the past 60 years. The term went into hibernation for a long time.

Research into AI began way back in Dartmouth College in 1956 and was constantly associated with being the next frontier in the 1980s when mainframe computers ruled and supercomputers were a ginormous investment that very few could afford.

Despite the research put in over the years, the technology never quite took off and fell flat in many instances.

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Voila, Volta!

NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang announcing Tesla V100.

NVIDIA has pulled yet another trick out of its always-filled hat of technology goodies with the launch of Volta, the world’s most powerful GPU computing architecture. At his keynote address at GTC in San Jose, NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang dubbed it “the next level of computer projects”.

Volta is created to drive the next wave of advancement in artificial intelligence (AI) and high performance computing.

The first Volta-based processor is the NVIDIA Tesla V100 data centre GPU, which brings extraordinary speed and scalability for AI inferencing and training, as well as for accelerating HPC and graphics workloads.

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The making of GTC

By Edward Lim

I am attending the GPU Technology Conference (GTC) in San Jose, California this week. It’s a massive conference with more than 7,000 participants from all around the world.

After decades of covering and attending conferences, I have noticed an evolution of sorts. Here are five things I’ve observed and really liked about this GTC.

  1. Rich content: Artificial intelligence is transforming our lives in many ways such as robotics, intelligent video analytics and driverless cars.  IDC has reported that 80 percent of all applications will be using AI by 2020.
  2. Tons of experiential booths: The who’s who of technology featured virtual reality applications across multiple industries, not just gaming,
  3. Smoothness of registration process: All it took was under a minute for those who’ve pre-registered to enter their n
    ames on a notebook computer and the tag is printed immediately.
  4. Power points everywhere: This is not the Microsoft presentation software but plugs that help to charge devices. In today’s age, we’ve become dependent on our smartphones, notebook computers and other battery-powered devices — all of which require power. Having the power points available across the facilities is an excellent and thoughtful move. And having points that incorporate USB slots and LAN connections? Wow!
  5. Candies, candies, candies: Admit it. There are times that we’ve yielded to the sleeping spirit while at conferences, especially after meals. Having a candy bar helps to provide the energy boost to keep participants awake.

With all these pluses, there is one area of improvement. There were many driverless cars on display. If only we can get to go for a ride in one.

Anyway, kudos to NVIDIA and the event organisers. I love GTC 2017!

NVIDIA to train 100,000 deep learning developers this year

Greg Estes of NVIDIA (left) addressing the global media at a press conference at GTC.

Interest in deep learning is growing so strongly that NVIDIA expects to train 100,000 developers this year — that’s 10 times more than last year —through its Deep Learning Institute (DLI).

According to research firm IDC, 80 percent of all applications will have an artificial intelligence (AI) component by 2020.

Greg Estes, Vice President of Developer Programs at NVIDIA, noted that there is a hunger for deep learning training. He cited the example of a DLI training at India Institute of Technology (IIT) in India where people came at 7.30am to try to sign up for a fully subscribed course.

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Caffe2, anyone?

Facebook is developing new artificial intelligent (AI) systems to help manage the vast amount of information — such as text, images and videos — generated daily so people can better understand the world and communicate more effectively, even as the volume of information increases.

It has worked with NVIDIA on Caffe2, a new AI deep learning framework that allows developers and researchers to create large-scale distributed training scenarios and build machine learning applications for edge devices.

Providing AI-powered services on mobile is a complex data processing task that must happen within the blink of an eye. Increasingly, the processing of lightning-fast AI services requires GPU-accelerated computing, such as that offered by Facebook’s Big Basin servers, as well as highly optimised deep learning software that can leverage the full capability of the accelerated hardware.

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No more IDF

After nearly two decades, Intel has decided to bring the curtains down on its annual Intel Developer Forum(IDF). Even the China edition has been canned.

A highly anticipated and popular event, IDF was the platform for new product announcements.

“Intel has evolved its event portfolio and decided to retire the IDF program moving forward. Thank you for nearly 20 great years with the Intel Developer Forum! Intel has a number of resources available on intel.com, including a Resource and Design Center with documentation, software, and tools for designers, engineers, and developers. As always, our customers, partners, and developers should reach out to their Intel representative with questions,” according to the official IDF website.