Advance Intelligence: Huawei Connect 2019 highlights company’s computing strategy and Atlas 900

Published September 19, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

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Understanding that computing and connectivity are co-existent, Huawei has been intensively investing in these two technological innovations in recent years. Tracing back their roots more than 70 years ago, computers have eventually become smaller yet more powerful. Enhancing our capabilities, computers have become an extension of human beings.

Computing model has evolved through the years. With the increasing inclusion of elements such as facial and voice recognition in today’s data, statistical computing is anticipated to become more mainstream five years from now, consuming 80% of computing power. Along with the rise of Internet of things (IoT) and innovations associated with it, computing will become ubiquitous in all devices. As we enter a new intelligent world, computing will witness a new golden era. Computing is expected to become a USD 2 trillion market years from now. 

Looking into the future, Huawei emphasized at Huawei Connect 2019 themed Advance Intelligence in Shanghai, China, its own strategy, focusing on architectural innovation, all-scenario processors, keeping clear business boundaries, and an open ecosystem. As the Moore’s law has almost reached its maximum limit, Huawei has realized that the computing industry needs a new architecture. This realization has led to the development of Huawei’s Da Vinci architecture. 

“This is a new age of exploration,” said Huawei’s Deputy Chairman Ken Hu.”An ocean of boundless potential is waiting, but just one ship won’t cut it. Today, we launch a thousand ships. Let us work together , seize this historic opportunity, and advance intelligence to new heights.” 

In spite of having an array of processors for different scenarios, Huawei is not only concentrating on selling these chips independently. Instead, the company has developed a business strategy that helps partners by providing them with open hardware, open source software, and development and porting support, empowering them to use these resources to come up with commercial products and services. Bolstering its business strategy, Huawei has committed to invest another USD 1.5 billion for 500 million developers in the next five years. 

In addition to its roster of processors, Huawei is also introducing the Atlas 900, the world’s fastest AI training cluster. Described as an AI computing powerhouse for business innovation and scientific research, the Atlas 900 delivers a compute power that significantly reduces the amount of time spent on data processing.  The Atlas 900 combines the power of thousands of Ascend processors. The system takes only 59.8 seconds to train ResNet-50, the gold standard for measuring AI training performance. This is ten seconds faster than the previous world record.

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Huawei’s Deputy Chairman Ken Hu at Huawei Connect 2019 in Shanghai, China.

Demonstrating its leadership in computing and AI, Huawei has formed alliances with various organizations across the globe. SKA, an intergovernmental organization dedicated to astronomy, employs Huawei antennas that collect faint cosmic signals, strategically positioned in Africa and Australia far away from the effects of artificial interference coming from major cities. Astronomical work is literally astronomical in terms of the volume of data that it gathers. With the help of Huawei’s expertise in computing and AI, SKA, in partnership with SHAO, can process data, which normally takes 169 days, in just 10.02 seconds.

Gao Wen, a Member of Chinese Academy of Engineering and Director of Peng Cheng Lab, spoke at this year’s event. He shared the mission and vision of Peng Cheng Lab and how the organization will work with Huawei to build China’s first evolving AI supercomputing system that supports exascale computing. The two companies will work together to establish a new generation of platforms for AI basic research and innovation.

Zheng Yelai, President of Huawei’s Cloud BU, talked about how AI can be applied in different scenarios. Based on Huawei’s experience in over 500 projects across more than ten industries, Zheng pointed out that industry AI is crossing the commercial chasm and becoming the key driver for reshaping how companies go digital.