Microsoft's AI Efforts Get a Boost from Nvidia, Elon Musk's OpenAI
Nvidia and OpenAI announce they're joining Microsoft in its efforts to advance the field of AI.It's no secret that Microsoft is banking on artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver next-generation IT services to its corporate customers as they embark on their digital transformation journey. This week during the SC16 supercomputing conference in Salt Lake City, the company joined computer graphics hardware maker Nvidia to announce they would collaborate to bring AI-enabled business processes and workflows to practically any enterprise. The companies are working together on an AI framework and platform that runs Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit, the open-source deep learning solution that mimics how the human brain processes information. According to Microsoft, leading data scientists employ the toolkit, along with the company's own Bing search engine and Cortana virtual assistant. The software is tailored to run to its fullest potential using Nvidia's Tesla graphical-processing units (GPUs), either on-premises or on Microsoft's cloud. In September, Microsoft announced the impending release of N-series Azure virtual machines that tap the processing power of GPUs provided by Nvidia. "We're working hard to empower every organization with AI, so that they can make smarter products and solve some of the world's most pressing problems," commented Harry Shum, executive vice president of the Artificial Intelligence and Research Group at Microsoft, in a Nov. 14 announcement. "By working closely with NVIDIA and harnessing the power of GPU-accelerated systems, we've made Cognitive Toolkit and Microsoft Azure the fastest, most versatile AI platform. AI is now within reach of any business."
Microsoft isn't the only IT heavyweight that's exploiting GPUs and their knack for parallel workloads, like AI and machine learning, to help usher in an era of smart applications.