Nvidia Shows Off Its AI, Deep Learning, VR Capabilities at GTC

 
 
By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2016-04-07
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    1 - Nvidia Shows Off Its AI, Deep Learning, VR Capabilities at GTC
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    Nvidia Shows Off Its AI, Deep Learning, VR Capabilities at GTC

    Highlights from Nvidia's GPU Technology Conference range from technology aimed at making VR more real to products for accelerating innovation in deep learning.
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    2 - Taking in Some Rays and Some Technology
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    Taking in Some Rays and Some Technology

    Attendees take a break outside the San Jose Convention Center, and next to one of two "Drone Zones" at the show, where companies showed off their Nvidia-powered wares.
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    3 - Deep Learning, AI Come Into Focus
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    Deep Learning, AI Come Into Focus

    During his keynote, Huang introduced a number of new offerings designed to help developers and systems makers build deep learning capabilities into their products and accelerate innovation around AI. Among the new products was the Tesla P100, a massive chip based on Nvidia's new 16-nanometer Pascal architecture that packs 150 billion transistors (from GPU cores and memory components) and uses a 16nm FinFET manufacturing process for better performance and efficiency, High-Bandwidth Memory (HBM2) technology and Nvidia's NVLink interconnect.
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    4 - 'A Deep Learning Supercomputer in a Box'
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    'A Deep Learning Supercomputer in a Box'

    The DGX-1 combines eight Tesla P100 GPUs with two Intel Xeon server chips to deliver up to 170 teraflops of performance in a 3U (5.25-inch) form factor. It will be priced at $129,000 and initially will be delivered to AI research institutions.
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    5 - Putting the Art Into Artificial Intelligence
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    Putting the Art Into Artificial Intelligence

    On the show floor, a number of companies showed off AI capabilities powered by Nvidia GPU technologies. One of those vendors, DeepArt, uses a deep learning algorithm that enables the computer to turn photos into pieces of art that can be painted in a range of styles chosen by the user.
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    6 - Making VR More Real
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    Making VR More Real

    Nvidia announced its new Iray VR rendering technology, which uses such capabilities as ray tracing to create virtual worlds that Huang said are "photoreal." "Realistic is not enough," the CEO told attendees. "It's got to be real. It's got to be photoreal." He used the technology to give the audience a virtual tour of Nvidia's upcoming new headquarters.
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    7 - Steve Wozniak Finally Makes It to Mars—Sort Of
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    Steve Wozniak Finally Makes It to Mars—Sort Of

    Apple co-founder Wozniak beamed into the convention center during Huang's keynote and used Nvidia's technology to take a virtual tour of the Red Planet.
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    8 - Getting Hands-On With VR
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    Getting Hands-On With VR

    At the VR Village on the show floor, attendees could test out VR headsets from Oculus and HTC and play games running on Nvidia technology.
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    9 - Nvidia Shows Off the Brains for Self-Driving Cars
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    Nvidia Shows Off the Brains for Self-Driving Cars

    Huang introduced the Drive PX 2, a board that comes with two Tegra chips and two Pascal discrete GPUs. The development kit, which carmakers can use to develop their autonomous cars, pulls in data from sensors on the vehicle to get a picture of the environment and software then decides how to react to the data. The development board will ship later this year.
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    10 - Drive PX 2, the Foundational Technology of Roborace
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    Drive PX 2, the Foundational Technology of Roborace

    Roboraces will pit driverless cars from 10 teams competing against each other. Each team gets two cars, and all cars will be equipped with the Drive PX 2 technology. It will be up to the teams to develop the algorithms and software for the cars. The races will be part of the new Formula E ePrix series.
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    11 - Stopping for Pedestrians
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    Stopping for Pedestrians

    A BMW SUV on the exhibit floor showed how Nvidia's Drive technology, armed with 3D sensing software from Quanergy Systems, can help vehicles detect pedestrians and automatically hit the brakes before they hit the pedestrians.
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    12 - GPU-Driven Vehicles More Than Simply Automobiles
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    GPU-Driven Vehicles More Than Simply Automobiles

    An autonomous, three-wheeled cart developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is designed to move without a driver.
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    13 - Marine Research Without the Marine Researchers
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    Marine Research Without the Marine Researchers

    The upcoming Wave Glider SV3 platform from Liquid Robotics is powered by wave and solar energy and uses Nvidia GPUs to help drive its autonomous capabilities. Due out later this year, the boat can run on its own for as long as a year.
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    14 - Droning On and On
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    Droning On and On

    Drones are a fixture at GTC, with two "Drone Zones" set up—one inside the convention center, the other outside. Here an employee with Intelligent Flying Machines shows off an Nvidia-powered indoor drone that can be used in large warehouses and factories.
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    15 - GPUs in the Data Center
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    GPUs in the Data Center

    Dell, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), Lenovo and Cisco Systems were among a large number of OEMs that showed off systems that take advantage of GPU accelerators from Nvidia. Pictured here is Dell workhorse PowerEdge R730, which recently was upgraded with Intel's latest Xeon E5 chips and also uses GPU accelerators.
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    16 - Keeping HPE on Ice
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    Keeping HPE on Ice

    At the HPE booth, attendees were greeted by an ice sign that doubled as a dispenser for chilled drinks. In the booth, HPE showed off a range of systems, from workstations to HPC offerings.
 

SAN JOSE, Calif.—Nvidia for much of its two-plus decades of life made most of its money by manufacturing and selling GPUs for gaming systems. While the bulk of the company's revenues still come from its mainstream graphics technologies, Nvidia over the past several years has been aggressively pushing into new growth areas, particularly virtual reality (VR), connected cars, and deep learning and artificial intelligence (AI). That pivot into these emerging markets has been on full display here this week at the company's GPU Technology Conference (GTC), an event whose growth has mirrored the rise in importance of GPUs in such areas as accelerated computing and high-performance computing (HPC). In 2012, 2,350 people attended GTC; this year, more than 5,000 are here. And Nvidia hasn't disappointed. In his keynote address April 5, CEO Jen-Hsun Huang made announcements in all the new target areas, from technologies designed to make VR worlds more real to products aimed at accelerating innovation in deep learning. This eWEEK slide show hits on some of the highlights of the conference.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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