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Intel pushes standardisation for artificial intelligence

Steve Rogerson
March 30, 3017

Intel plans to rally the industry around a set of standards for artificial intelligence (AI) that ultimately brings down costs and makes AI more accessible to more people, not just institutions, governments and large companies, as it is today.
“AI is changing the world around us and will bring new capabilities to everything from smart factories to drones to sports to health care and to driverless cars,” said Naveen Rao (pictured), vice president and general manager of Intel’s artificial intelligence products group. Rao was CEO of Nervana, an AI company that Intel acquired last year.
He said data provided the common thread across all the applications, and Intel’s strategy was to become the driving force of the data revolution across every industry.
“As a data company, it is imperative that we deliver solutions that create, use and analyse the massive amounts of data that are generated each and every minute,” he said. “Data inference, or finding useful structure in data, may indeed be the largest computational problem of our time. That is why AI is so important to Intel. It is also why we are announcing that Intel is aligning its AI efforts under me, in a single cross-Intel organisation: the artificial intelligence products group.”
Just as Intel has done in previous waves of computational trends, such as personal and cloud computing, the chip giant plans to rally the industry around a set of standards for AI that ultimately brings down costs and makes AI more accessible.
“This organisation is about aligning our focus,” he said. “The new organisation will align resources from across the company to include engineering, labs, software and more as we build on our current leading AI portfolio.”
The Intel Nervana platform is a full-stack of hardware and software AI offerings.
The company also plans to create an applied AI research laboratory dedicated to pushing the forefronts of computing.
“We will be exploring novel architectural and algorithmic approaches to inform future generations of AI,” said Rao. “This includes a range of solutions from the data centre to edge devices, and from training to inference, all designed to enable Intel and its customers to innovate faster. This will be the home for AI innovation at Intel.”
He said that after six months at Intel he saw how the world could change when a company such as Intel focused on an effort.
“I believe this new organisation will have a huge impact, not only for Intel, but upon the entire evolving AI space,” he said. “We look forward to creating the future together.”