OpenPOWER and AI Workshop Continues Partnership Between IBM and NITK

By Basavaraj Talawar, assistant professor, Computer Science and Engineering Department, National Institute of Technology Karnataka Surathkal

We recently held a half-day session at the National Institute of Technology (NITK) on IBM’s deep learning initiatives. I was proud to be joined by Romeo Kienzler, chief data scientist, IBM Watson IoT and IBM Certified Senior Architect.

We first reviewed the history and important milestones of the long-standing collaboration between IBM and NITK, including:

  • Dipankar Sarma, distinguished scientist, IBM, visit to NITK in November, 2014
  • Creating of a memorandum of understanding between both organizations in November, 2016
  • Establishment of the NITK-IBM Computer Systems Research Group in November, 2016
  • Start of the POWER on gem5 project in July, 2016

Our POWER on gem5 project is currently in its third year and is closer than ever to reaching its goal of executing a full-fledged Linux kernel on the POWER module in gem5. My colleague Kajol Jain, a student working on the project, shared a comprehensive summary on her work getting the serial console up on the POWER-gem5 module in gem5. Previous milestones accomplished in the project include support for the 64b integer POWER ISA 3.0, ABI v2 support, MMU support and Radix page support.

Kienzler then shared some of the exciting breakthroughs in the AI world, both from the IBM point-of-view and in general. He began with the fundamental linear algebra required for the machine learning concepts that followed in this field. Then, he covered an introduction to tensors and regressions, convolution neural networks, back propagation and related concepts.

Kienzler went on to share a glimpse of what AI will do for us in the future. An overview including automated self-aware automotive design, driverless vehicles, self-aware 3D printing and cognizant robots certainly piqued our interest!

The audience, which consisted mostly of bright bachelor of technology students, were in-step and engaged with the concepts throughout the presentation. Thank you to Kienzler for sharing his insight and expertise with us, and IBM for their continued partnership with NITK.