With the Right Investments Made, Intel’s AI-Future is Looking Bright

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With the Right Investments Made, Intel’s AI-Future is Looking Bright

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During an investor conference recently, Intel’s data-center chief, Diane Bryant revealed a detailed insight into the company’s strategy to participate in the development of AI.

Bryant explained that Intel has been investing in the broad space of AI, gathering large amounts of data and applying algorithms allow computers to learn and predict, for the past five years. Referring to Intel’s investments in software technologies, such as 18% equity stake in Cloudera and in hardware, including Intel’s acquisition of Nervana, the Motley Fool writes.

She also mentioned that only 7% of all servers are used for AI applications today, but that she predicts it to become the number one workload, growing 12 times by 2020. Analyst Blane Curtis was also present, highlighting that graphics processing units (GPU’s) have received the majority of the early wins and attention in the deep-learning market.

With Nervana, Intel now has technology that’s completely dedicated to AI, Curtis said, further asking Bryant: “What do you need to do to get those solutions to market, and what work is needed to port over the work that’s been done on a GPU to run on these?”

Bryant replied with addressing Curtis’ claim that GPU’s have gotten the “early wins”, saying that 94% of all servers that are running analytic workloads do so on two-socket Xeon servers today.

Bryant’s reply was that: “3% run on a two-socket Xeon server with a GPU” and that the remaining 2% “run on some other architecture, like IBM’s POWER or Oracle’s SPARC.”

“So we dominate the small world of artificial intelligence,” Bryant said. After this, Bryant explained to the audience that the first Nervana-based hardware will be launched as a chip mounted onto an add-in card, however, the next-generation Nervana engine will be integrated into its Xeon processor.

“It will be a bootable processor with the Nervana deep-learning engines, and we stated that we’ll deliver 100 times performance improvement over today’s GPU solution by 2020,” Bryant said.

Looking at these steps taken by Intel, it is clear that the company is well positioned in the AI-space. The Motley Fool predicts that their strategy of not only betting on a single technology, but rather broadening their portfolio of technologies is good.

Now all we can do is wait and see which technologies that ends up being the most popular for AI applications in the long-term, however, Intel’s strategy should allow them to win regardless of the direction the industry takes, the website predicts.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

This article was first published at: http://www.fool.com/investing/2016/12/12/intel-wants-you-to-know-that-its-all-in-on-artific.aspx

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