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Changes Go Far Beyond Just AI, Machine Learning


SambaNova Systems is a technology startup founded in 2017 by a group of far-sighted engineers and data scientists who saw that the current approaches to AI and machine learning were beginning to run out of steam, and that an entire new architecture would be necessary in order to make AI accessible for everyone as well as deliver the scale, performance, accuracy and ease of use needed for future applications. AI and machine learning in particular have grown over the past decade to become key tools for processing and making sense of large and complex data sets. This trend is set to continue, with IDC forecasting that the overall AI software market will approach $240 billion in revenue in 2024, up from $156 billion in 2020. But AI is no longer just for supercomputing. The volumes of data collected by organizations have become large and complex data sets, leading to machine learning being incorporated into all manner of applications from natural language processing (NLP), high-resolution computer vision, recommendations and high performance computing (HPC) to everyday business processes.

Software Has To Lead Hardware In The AI Dance


A lot of the people who are working at the many AI chip startups have a long history in processor development in the datacenter, and that is certainly true of the folks who founded SambaNova Systems. And this is a fortunate thing because these people can leverage some of the good ideas they know worked when commercializing a new technology and avoid some of the big mistakes their former employers sometimes made. At our recent The Next AI Platform event, we sat down with Rodrigo Liang, co-founder and chief executive officer of SambaNova Systems, which is one of the upstart custom AI chip producers vying for attention and budget dollars. SambaNova was founded in 2017 by a bunch of ex-Sun Microsystems techies as well as a few from Stanford University, which is of course where Sun itself was born in 1982. The co-founders include Kunle Olukotun and Chris Ré, professors at Stanford, with Olukotun being the leader of the Hydra chip multiprocessor research project and sometimes known as the father of the multicore processor.

SambaNova claims AI performance rivaling Nvidia, unveils as-a-service offering


SambaNova says just one quarter of a rack's worth of its DataScale computer can replace 64 separate Nvidia DGX-2 machines taking up multiple racks of equipment, when crunching various deep learning tasks such as natural language processing tasks on neural networks with billions of parameters such as Google's BERT-Large. The still very young market for artificial intelligence computers is spawning interesting business models. On Wednesday, SambaNova Systems, the Palo Alto-based startup that has received almost half a billion dollars in venture capital money, announced general availability of its dedicated AI computer, the DataScale and also announced an as-a-service offering where you can have the machine placed in your data center and rent its capacity for $10,000 a month. "What this is, is a way for people to gain quick and easy access at an entry price of $10,000 per month, and consume DataScale product as a service," said Marshall Choy, Vice President of product at SambaNova, in an interview with ZDNet via video. "I'll roll a rack, or many racks, into their data center, I'll own and manage and support the hardware for them, so they truly can just consume this product as a service offering."

SambaNova is enabling disruption in the enterprise with AI language models, computer vision, recommendations, and graphs


Like artificial intelligence itself, the AI startup SambaNova is interesting across the stack. SambaNova has made the news for a number of reasons: high-profile founders, a series of funding rounds propelling it into unicorn territory, impressive AI chip technology and unconventional choices in packaging it. The company is now executing on its goal -- to enable AI disruption in the enterprise. SambaNova just announced its GPT-as-a-service offering, its ELEVAITE membership program for customers, and is working with one of the biggest banks in Europe to build what it claims will be Europe's fastest AI supercomputer. We connected with SambaNova CEO and co-founder Rodrigo Liang to talk about all that, plus one of our favorite topics: graphs and how they underpin SambaNova's offering.

How SambaNova Systems is tackling dataflow-as-a-service


All the sessions from Transform 2021 are available on-demand now. SambaNova Systems, winner of VentureBeat's 2021 Innovation in Edge award, is a significant contender in the global edge computing market. The startup raised $676 million in April 2021 and is moving from its origins as an AI-specific chip company to one that provides comprehensive dataflow-as-a-service to its clients. Research firm MarketsandMarkets forecasts an impressive 34% compounded annual growth rate for the market and anticipates its value reaching $15.7 billion by 2025. Traditional central processing units (CPUs) and graphics processing units (GPUs) are based on transactional processing, which needs accuracies to the nth degree for computations.