Irish chip maker Movidius has created the world's first deep learning USB stick that can add artificial intelligence (AI) to future products from self-driving cars to robots, and drones that will learn to think for themselves. Entitled the Fathom Neural Compute Stick, the device will sell for less than 100 and will allow powerful neural networks to be moved out of the cloud and deployed on new products like robots and drones. It is the latest breakthrough for the Dublin company, which has been winning major multi-million dollar deals with Google and drone maker DJI. 'With Fathom, every robot, big and small, can now have state-of-the-art vision capabilities' – DR YANN LECUN, NEW YORK UNIVERSITY "Any organisation can now add deep learning or machine intelligence to devices using the USB stick and create products that will be accessible to broader markets," Movidius co-founder David Moloney told Siliconrepublic.com. "We've already seen how the auto industry has been outflanked by Tesla and this is also starting to affect other industries.
Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang introducing the Nvidia Spot, a USD 49.95 microphone and speaker that will let owners use Google Assistant anywhere in a home, at the company's CES 2017 keynote (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) Nvidia continued to see demand for its graphics processors in the emerging world of artificial intelligence in its fourth quarter earnings reported Thursday. In its fourth quarter earnings release, the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company reported revenue of $2.17 billion, up 55% year over year, on earnings per share of $1.13, up 117% a year ago. Wall Street analysts estimated $2.11 billion in revenue on EPS of 83 cents. Traditionally, the company's processors have been mostly used to power the latest gaming graphics, but the chips have become popular to run AI software in the data center and autonomous vehicles. A specific branch of AI, called deep learning, is where Nvidia's processors particularly shine.
Governor Andrew Cuomo of the State of New York declared last month that New York City will join 13 other states in testing self-driving cars: "Autonomous vehicles have the potential to save time and save lives, and we are proud to be working with GM and Cruise on the future of this exciting new technology." For General Motors, this represents a major milestone in the development of its Cruise software, since the the knowledge gained on Manhattan's busy streets will be invaluable in accelerating its deep learning technology. In the spirit of one-upmanship, Waymo went one step further by declaring this week that it will be the first car company in the world to ferry passengers completely autonomously (without human engineers safeguarding the wheel).
An automated test vehicle equipped with Bosch technology. On the heels of Intel's $15.3 billion plan to buy computer vision powerhouse Mobileye to lock in a big piece of the automated car tech market, Nvidia and Bosch are teaming up to make an AI-enabled computer that can be mass-produced to serve as the brains for driverless vehicles. The Silicon Valley maker of graphics processors and its new German partner, which ranks among the world's largest auto parts makers, will develop a computer that utilizes Nvidia's deep learning software and Drive PX processor, Bosch CEO Volkmar Denner announced at Bosch's ConnectedWorld conference in Berlin. Financial details for the project weren't included in their statement, and Nvidia and Bosch both declined to elaborate. "Bosch will build automotive-grade systems for the mass production of autonomous cars," Nvidia CEO and founder Jen-Hsun Huang said in the statement.
The first intelligent robots that humans interact with on a regular basis will likely be self-driving cars--not a humanoid working in the cubicle next door. Drive.ai, an autonomous vehicle tech startup founded by former graduate students working in Stanford University's Artificial Intelligence Lab, officially came out of stealth mode--a temporary quiet period to avoid alerting competitors--on Tuesday with some details about what it's building and a high-profile addition to its board. Steve Girsky, who sat on the General Motors board for seven years until June, has joined the Drive.ai The Mountain View-based startup, which has raised 12 million from an undisclosed venture capital firm and strategic investors, was forced out of stealth in April when it was awarded a license to test autonomous vehicles in California. But until now, little was known about what Drive.ai was working on.