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From: JakeStraw6/27/2017 8:22:35 AM
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Nvidia announced a partnership with Volvo and Swedish auto supplier Autoliv to jointly develop self-driving vehicle technology. The graphics chipmaker already has partnerships with Tesla, Toyota, and others.
markets.siliconinvestor.com

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From: JakeStraw6/27/2017 12:17:25 PM
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Volkswagen partners with Nvidia to expand its use of AI beyond autonomous vehicles
techcrunch.com

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From: Glenn Petersen6/27/2017 3:10:25 PM
   of 1574
 
h/t FUBHO

Nvidia Deals Tilt Robo-Car Race

Junko Yoshida
EETimes
6/27/2017 11:51 AM EDT

PARIS — Claiming that robo-car development by automakers has already moved from the R&D phase to production, Nvidia this week unveiled three new partnership deals — all aimed at leveraging its AI car-computing platform.

Nvidia announced Monday (June 26) that Volvo and Autoliv have selected Nvidia’s Drive PX 2 for production of self-driving cars in 2021.

Nvidia said that it also sealed a deal with ZF & Hella, who are both committed to working with Nvidia to deliver with the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) safety certification for the mass deployment of self-driving vehicles.

But wait. There’s more. Nvidia also disclosed an agreement Volkswagen, under which the German carmaker will expand deep learning “competence” throughout the enterprise and developing a number of AI apps running in the data center.

Prior to these disclosures, Nvidia had already picked up a number of other notable car OEMs and tier ones as partners for autonomous vehicle development. Among them, Tesla has been already using Drvie PX in its current-generation cars. Audi is planning to deliver Level 4 cars based on Drive PX platform in 2020, and Toyota will use Nvidia’s platform to power advanced autonomous driving systems. Separately, Daimler, Mercedes Benz (owned by Daimler) and tier one Robert Bosch have also chosen Nvidia as their autonomous platform partner.

See the relationship map below.



(Source: EE Times)
______________________

Nvidia's senior automotive director Danny Shapiro told reporters, “The momentum of autonomous vehicles” is growing. The focus of activity is shifting from development to the “production phase.”

Noting 225 different “engagements” involving its Drive PX platform, Shapiro said that Nvidia is working with “a whole spectrum of players in the automotive industry ranging from OEMs, tier ones to trucks, HD mapping companies, sensors and startups.”

Citing Nvidia’s deal with Volkswagen, Shapiro said AI is now being applied not just to vehicles (i.e. path planning), but also to a backend system where a data center crunches out traffic patterns, flows and driving behavior while looking for anomalies — figuring out the entire transportation ecosystem.

Luca De Ambroggi, principal analyst for automotive electronics at IHS Markit, agreed. “This is the power of Nvidia offering a well distributed and consistent ‘solution’ in different domains from the ‘edge’ up to the infrastructure," he said. "A lot of money (for the OEMs) stays in functionalities like predictive diagnostic, and maintenance, cybersecurity and traffic management.”

Previously some skeptics noted that Nvidia’s AI platform might be effective for research, but not necessarily for production cars. However, Nvidia appears to be defying those predictions.

Ian Riches, director of global automotive practice at Strategy Analytics, told EE Times, “On the basis of public announcements, Nvidia would seem to be in the lead at the moment. That was my assessment before this latest round of news, so this has only reinforced that view.”

Phil Magney, founder and principal at Vision Systems Intelligence (VSI), agreed. "I can hardly think of a single OEM not working (or developing) on Nvidia DrivePX technology. This does not mean they will all go into production with Nvidia. It's just that OEMs cannot afford to not examine the Nvidia eco-system for AI-based safety and automation technology."

How fluid is the situation?

Of course, none of the announced partnerships is exclusive. More important, the effort to design highly automated vehicles is a battle scene with a cast of thousands — ranging from chip suppliers to tier ones, OEMs, component suppliers and software developers.

A big question is the fluidity of these partnership arrangements. How easily might a car OEM committed to one platform (such as Drive PX) switch to another (such as the one by Intel/Mobileye/BMW)?

Strategy Analytics’ Riches said, “A commitment to a certain platform does not mean that it will never change — but does show a high degree of confidence that it is the best available solution for the short- and medium-term.”

He added, “There is always a cost to change. Software will be optimized for a particular hardware architecture, and engineers will get used to and skilled with a certain ecosystem of tools.”

When asked how hard to switch platforms, VSI's Magney told EE Times, "There is no plug and play Automated Vehicle (AV) stack. Once an OEM has committed it is probably going to stick with it, at least for that generation of vehicle."

VSI is currently engaged in developing an automated vehicle for its own research purposes. Magney said, "The development of AV functions is very difficult, as we are learning for ourselves. Stitching together all the code bases, synchronizing sensors, calibrating torque signals, controlling latencies, etc. takes massive investments in engineering resources."

He added, "Furthermore, developing and integrating the software stack into the hardware platform is also tough and very time consuming. Some of the AV Stacks come with an abstraction layer for adapting software applications a little bit easier, but in the case of AV Development platforms, there are still lots of gaps."

IHS Markit’s Ambroggi believes the situation is more nuanced and possibly more complex. By breaking down challenges associated with highly automated vehicle design into two chunks — hardware and software aspects — he noted, “Clearly, Nvidia wants to provide a complete solution for its customers (i.e. SW+HW), but in reality, in the commercial deal, the package sold might be having different models.”

De Ambroggi laid out two potential scenarios. The first scenario is that tier ones and OEMs might take the complete solution from Nvidia (i.e. DrivePX platform with Xavier + Nvidia AI software packages). Or, “They might take the software and algorithms portion only, remaining as much as possible agnostic on the hardware side.” He explained that “in this way OEMs can even trade better on SoC price, and ensure second source.”

Of course, “however you look at it, in software there is a lot of the ‘added value’ and the ‘high margin,’” he added.

What’s going for Nvidia, though, in De Ambroggi’s opinion, is its influence on the data center and training infrastructure, which he compares to Intel’s. “So, they are in the best position to bundle an optimized solution for their customers including IT infrastructure.”

Complicating the robo-car platform race is that “this AI-box will need to take input from different sensors from different suppliers (which Nvidia doesn’t really control) and deliver information/action to other generic ECUs (which are also coming from different suppliers),” De Ambroggi observed.

In the end, “What is inside the box might not matter as long as performance matches the requirements of the OEMs,” De Ambroggi concluded. “Clearly a minimum of standardization in I/O has to be ensured, and I think OEMs/tier ones will need to care for it.”

AImotive replaced by Zenuity

Partner swapping is already happening in the transition research to production phase, as indicated by the Nvidia-Volvo deal.

For Volvo’s "Drive Me" project in Gothenburg, Sweden, Volvo used Nvidia’s platform along with software from AImotive (previously known as AdasWorks).



Inside look at Volvo's self-driving car (Source: Nvidia)
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But under a new agreement for the production model, Volvo, now in a partnership with Autoliv to develop and manufacture automotive safety systems, will replace AImotive with Zenuity. The latter is a newly formed automotive software development joint venture equally owned by Volvo Cars and Autoliv to develop next-generation self-driving car technologies, according to the companies

Zenuity will provide Volvo with self-driving software. Autoliv will also sell this software to third party OEMs, using its established and broad sales, marketing and distribution network.

Meanwhile, the system developed jointly by ZF and Hella, and using Nvidia's Drive PX platform, will combine front cameras with radar and software to create technology meeting the Euro NCAP safety certification for so-called "Level 3" driving.

More specifically, ZF, one of the industry’s largest automotive suppliers, and HELLA, a leading tier one supplier of camera perception software and sensor technologies, will “provide customers with a complete self-driving system that integrates front camera units, as well as supporting software functions and radar systems,” the companies said.



ZF's ProAI self-driving system (Source: Nvidia)
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Easy migration path

Nvidia’s Shapiro called the transition from development to the R&D phase “an easy migration path.” No reset is required and systems are code-compatible.

In the end, Nvidia’s edge, said Shapiro, is the “openness” of its architecture. He called it “a software-defined, open automotive platform, powered by an AI system.”

This openness allows tier ones to customize and write new software, add new features and functions, and update them. The chip architecture can run many different versions of software, Shapiro explained. “It’s open and scalable, thus letting automakers to stay ahead.”

Magney attributed the momentum building around Nvidia to what the company has already built -- namely, "nearly a complete AV stack for the development of AV technologies." Magney added, "They have all the hardware, libraries, and development tools so that OEMs, tier-ones and other third-party developers can build up their applications. They also have (in collaboration with tier-one partners) production-ready solutions for incremental ADAS and automation."

Game over for other players?

De Ambroggi agrees that Nvidia is best positioned now on the AI side. It has already reached a “critical mass” of engagement with several automotive players.

While pegging Nvidia and Intel as “obvious leaders” on the hardware side, he cautioned that the market scenario could change, as carmakers might seek a platform more hardware-agnostic.

He added, “Let's remember that AI platforms are not the only electronic system to drive/control the car.” From the ADAS/autonomous driving perspective, especially in the short and middle term, the landscape could shift, he explained. As a result, “There is still place for more traditional electronics as well as suppliers [i.e. Texas Instruments, NXP].” In his opinion, “Safety and AI need some further progression to come closer and speak same language, and system redundancy is required.”

— Junko Yoshida, Chief International Correspondent, EE Times

eetimes.com

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (1540)6/27/2017 10:15:43 PM
From: Gone to Money Heaven
   of 1574
 
Need to add the reference to the trucking industry with the PACCAR alliance, not mentioned in the EE Times article.

NVIDIA announced today that it’s working with PACCAR, a leading global truck manufacturer, on developing solutions for autonomous vehicles.

The collaboration was shared by NVIDIA Founder and CEO Jen-Hsun Huang during his keynote at the Bosch Connected World conference in Berlin. Separately, he provided details of NVIDIA’s partnership with Bosch, the world’s largest automotive supplier, on self-driving car technology.

“This is probably the largest single mass of a product that we’ve helped make,” said Huang, addressing a crowd of more than 2,000 executives, developers and others attending the event.

PACCAR CEO Ron Armstrong, said separately, “PACCAR is exploring automated driving systems and we are excited about what our collaboration on artificial intelligence with NVIDIA has delivered so far.”

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To: Gone to Money Heaven who wrote (1541)6/28/2017 4:36:16 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
   of 1574
 
The failure to mention PACCAR was a significant omission. the PACCAR/Nvidia deal was referenced in an article I posted on May 10: Message 31101480

On Monday, the autonomous vehicle board featured a Bloomberg profile of Starsky Robotics, a self-driving trucking startup, which has "designed an artificial intelligence system for big-rig trucks that makes them mostly self-sufficient on highways, and then, when it’s time to exit onto local roads, allows them to be taken over and driven from a remote operations center. The plan is to eventually employ dozens of drivers, each of whom will keep an eye on a few trucks at once, sitting before arrays of monitors livestreaming views of windshields and mirrors."

Message 31160791

Surprisingly, the paragraph regarding competition also failed to mention PACCAR:

Its competitors include Embark, which is also backed by Y Combinator, and Otto, a startup that raised no outside capital and had fewer than 100 employees when Uber Technologies Inc. acquired it for $700 million. (Otto is the subject of a lawsuit that claims its co-founder stole technology from Alphabet, Google’s parent.) A fourth company, Peloton Technology, has raised $78 million to pursue adding some autonomous capabilities to conventional trucks. There are also self-driving big-rig programs inside Alphabet, Tesla, Volvo, and Daimler.

There is a lot of competition in the space.

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (1537)6/30/2017 10:16:17 PM
From: Glenn Petersen
1 Recommendation   of 1574
 
A Wall Street bank is betting Nvidia will win the cryptocurrency battle (NVDA, AMD)

Seth Archer
Business Insider
Jun. 30, 2017, 10:48 AM



Genesis Mining
_________________

Nvidia and AMD are in a war.

The two companies both produce graphics cards and compete over PC gamers, self-driving car manufacturers and data center managers to prove that their technology is superior. Nvidia tends to be ahead in many of those markets and has seen its stock rise more this year because of it.

A new market is emerging though. The two graphics processing unit (GPU) companies are currently fighting over the cryptocurrency GPU market, and both are rumored to be releasing cryptocurrency optimized chips in the near future, according to RBC Capital Markets.

Cryptocurrencies are red-hot right now. Bitcoin is probably the most notable and has been around for years. But, recent explosive growth in rival currency Ethereum, has been making headlines. Recently, $100 million worth of GPUs were added to the Ethereum network in just 11 days.

The cryptocurrencies are made up of a decentralized network of users, and every time a transaction occurs in one of these currencies, it has to be verified by the whole network. People who help confirm these transactions are called "miners" and often use GPUs to speed up the calculations required to verify payments.

Previously, miners have used GPUs designed for gaming in their computers. This works, but isn't optimized for the task. Nvidia and AMD could release new cards that are optimized to draw as little power as possible and increase the speed of cryptocurrency specific tasks.

RBC reckons that when this happens, Nvidia's chip will outpace its rival AMD.


"Given Nvidia's performance lead across numerous categories (gaming and data center) we think the Company is best positioned to become the market leader in GPU based cryptocurrency mining if a new product is released," RBC wrote in a recent note to clients.

Details about the new cards are sparse, and their existence is only rumored for now. Considering only current GPUs, AMD has beaten out Nvidia because it has been faster at mining-specific tasks. RBC is betting this will change soon. When Nvidia has time to optimize their technology for mining, RBC thinks the company will be able to outpace AMD.

Previous domination in markets Nvidia has set its sights on is really the only information RBC is working with. Until the new cards come out or are officially announced, improvements are only hypothetical. RBC thinks Nvidia's work in data centers and high-end consumer gaming is enough to bet on the company winning the cryptocurrency market as well. Nvidia is certainly making waves in the self-driving car market, with a recent slate of high-profile partnerships.

Only time will tell. Nvidia is up 43.4% this year, compared to AMD's 10.24% increase and the general S&P 500's 7.17% increase.

markets.businessinsider.com

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From: vicor7/2/2017 3:59:48 PM
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The NVDA generated strong volume surges over the past 2 months. The NVDA stock made more than 223% in 2016 and we have not seen such subnormal trading activity then. Now, by running up 36% the NVDA stock's flow of the money (volume X price) hit $147 Billions over 2 month period - almost the entire 2016 year's flow of the money ($162 B).

Some group of traders, by some reasons, dumped $147 B of the NVDA stocks over the past 2 months. In volume analysis it is called as "distribution phase before a reversal down".

The NVDA stock is a good one, there is no doubt about it. The video recognition technology is in high demand and this demand will be growing as as artificial intelligence evolves. This stock could be good choice for a run up. However, as of now, volume analysis suggest that we will see a decline on this stock and this correction down should be strong enough to attract back those institutional investors who dumped $147 B of this stock over the past 2 months.



Chart courtesy of marketvolume.com

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From: Glenn Petersen7/5/2017 3:02:17 PM
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Nvidia jumps after announcing an AI partnership with Baidu (NVDA)

Seth Archer
Business Insider
Jul. 5, 2017, 01:36 PM



Nvidia is popping after the company announced a partnership with China's biggest internet search company, Baidu.

Shares of Nvidia are up 3.27% on Wednesday following the announcement, and Baidu is up a similar amount, increasing 2.76%.

The partnership between the two companies hopes to tackle several areas of AI research, most notably self-driving cars.

"We believe AI is the most powerful technology force of our time, with the potential to revolutionize every industry," Ian Buck, Nvidia's vice president and general manager of accelerated computing, said in a press release. "Our collaboration aligns our exceptional technical resources to create AI computing platforms for all developers."

Baidu has agreed to adopt Nvidia's Dive PX self-driving car platform as it aims t0 have autonomous cars driving on Chinese roads soon. Nvidia's platform will be a key component in making this happen.

Additionally, Baidu announced several Chinese car manufacturers would be partnering with the company to help manufacturer self-driving cars.

The partnership doesn't stop with cars, though. The two companies will also be collaborating on improving Baidu's AI research capabilities. Baidu will deploy some of Nvidia's server hardware in its data centers. Nvidia's hardware should help researchers process data from images, speech text and video faster than before, according to the joint press release.

Nvidia and Baidu also announced they would be optimizing Baidu's "PaddlePaddle" deep learnings technology for Nvidia's GPUs and adding Baidu's DuerOS AI system to Nvidia's Shield TV set top box.

The partnership is just one more in a string of recent announcements from Nvidia. The company has been beefing up its partnerships with major car companies to increase its reach in the self-driving car market. Baidu is a particularly large partnership, as it adds to Nvidia's international reach.

Nvidia is up 40.86% this year, including Wednesday's move.

markets.businessinsider.com

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (1540)7/5/2017 7:39:04 PM
From: sandintoes
   of 1574
 

Baidu-Nvidia Plan Latest in Expanding Self-Driving Constellation, Says Raymond James The partnership announced today between China's Baidu and US chip vendor Nvidia is just the latest in an expanding constellation of self-driving car partnerships, many of which overlap in terms of the parties involved, according to research by Raymond James analyst Tavis McCourt.

By
Tiernan Ray

Updated July 5, 2017 5:20 p.m. ET
As mentioned earlier today, China’s search engine giant Baidu ( BIDU) struck a partnership with chip vendor Nvidia ( NVDA), and other tech companies, to develop self-driving automobiles.

In a note to clients this afternoon, Raymond James analyst Tavis McCourt notes that this is just the latest of a slew of industry partnerships.

“The list of autonomous projects globally continues to grow,” writes McCourt, "and we would note that many, if not most, of Baidu’s partners also have other autonomous projects they are participating in, as shown below."



If you’re interested in following the action, McCourt offers a chart of the various announced partnerships that you may want to keep handy:





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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (1545)7/7/2017 7:11:32 PM
From: sandintoes
   of 1574
 
I read somewhere, and now I can't find it, that NVDA was brought down for a while by unscrupulous short traders..why don't they just let it run?

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