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OpenPOWER Developer Congress Event to Focus on Machine Learning

Today IBM announced that the first annual OpenPOWER Foundation Developer Congress will take place May 22-25 in San Francisco. With a focus on Machine Learning, the conference will focus on continuing to foster the collaboration within the foundation to satisfy the performance demands of today’s computing market.

Developers will have the opportunity to learn and gain first-hand insights from the creators of some of the most advanced technology currently driving Deep Learning, AI and Machine Learning. Key themes will include:

  • Deep Learning, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence through GPU Acceleration and OpenACC. Learn the latest techniques on how to design, train and deploy neural network-powered machine learning in your applications.
  • Deploy a fully optimized and supported platform for machine learning with IBM’s PowerAI that supports the most popular machine learning frameworks — Anaconda, Caffe, Chainer, TensorFlow and Theano.
  • Custom Acceleration for AI through FPGAs
  • Porting, Optimization, Developer Tools and Techniques
  • Firmware & OpenBMC

The Developer Congress is supported by the newly formed OpenPOWER Machine Learning Work Group (OPMLWG), an addition to the OpenPOWER Foundation community. The new group — which includes Cineca, Google and Mellanox, among others— provides a forum for collaboration that will help define frameworks for the productive development and deployment of machine learning solutions using the IBM POWER architecture and OpenPOWER ecosystem technology.

As part of the ecosystem, the OPMLWG plays a crucial role in expanding the OpenPOWER mission. It focuses on addressing the challenges machine learning project developers are continuously facing by identifying use cases, defining requirements and extracting workflows, to better understand processes with similar needs and pain points. The working group will also identify and develop technologies for the effective execution on machine learning applications by enabling hardware (HW), software (SW) and acceleration across the OpenPOWER ecosystem.

The OPMLWG group and Developer Congress come soon after the OpenPOWER Foundation surpassed a 300-member milestone, with large players joining the fold that have developed new processes and technologies based on the OpenPOWER architecture. Some recent additions include:

  • Red Hat, which joined as a Platinum member and part of the board, adding open source leadership and expertise around community driven software innovation
    Kinetica, offers a high-performance analytics database that harnesses the power of GPUs for unprecedented performance to ingest, explore and visualize data in motion and at rest
  • Bitfusion, leaders in end to end application lifecycle management and developer automation for deep learning, AI and GPUs.
    MapD Technologies, which offers a fast database and visual analytics platform that leverages the parallel processing power of GPUs

Open standards are a critical component of modern enterprise IT, and for OpenPOWER having a common set of guidelines for integration, implementation and enhanced IT security are key,” said Scott Herold, senior manager, Multi-Architecture product strategy Red Hat. “Red Hat is a strong proponent of open standards across the technology stack and we are pleased to work with the OpenPOWER Foundation’s various work groups in driving these standards to further enterprise choice as it relates to computing architecture.”

All OpenPOWER Members can join and work on:

  • Collection and description of use cases
  • Porting, tuning and optimization of important Open Source Library / Frameworks
  • Creating a ML/DL Sandbox for quick start, including example use cases, data sets and tools
  • Recommending platform features for machine learning

OpenPOWER was founded with the goal of granting the marketplace more technology choice and the ability to rethink the approach to data centers. Today, we see the growing application of machine-learning and cognitive technology, the OpenPOWER foundation is actively supporting technical initiatives and solution development in these areas to help drive innovation and industry growth, said John Zannos, Chairman of The OpenPOWER Foundation. “The Machine Learning Work Group will focus on addressing this need for innovation, allowing technology developers and users to collaborate as they search for the solutions to the computational challenges being posed by machine learning and artificial intelligence.”

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