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IT & Data Center

HPE buys Determined AI and its deep learning development platform

by Louis Stone
Article ImageThe startup promises faster training, more accurate models

Hewlett Packard Enterprise has acquired San Francisco-based Determined AI, which builds software stacks to train artificial intelligence models faster.

The startup's open-source machine learning platform will be integrated with HPE’s existing high-performance computing offerings.

Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

Founded in 2017 by Neil Conway, Evan Sparks, and Ameet Talwalkar, Determined has raised $13.6 million to date.

To be determined

“As we enter the Age of Insight, our customers recognize the need to add machine learning to deliver better and faster answers from their data,” said Justin Hotard, SVP and GM of HPC and mission-critical solutions at HPE.

“AI-powered technologies will play an increasingly critical role in turning data into readily available, actionable information to fuel this new era. Determined AI’s unique open source platform allows ML engineers to build models faster and deliver business value sooner without having to worry about the underlying infrastructure."

Determined AI claims that its software allowed a drug discovery workload to shrink from three days to three hours, by taking care of provisioning machines, networking, data loading, and fault tolerance.

The company said HPE could take advantage of the tech because AI was increasingly becoming an HPC problem – you can no longer build systems on a home computer, and need significant computing power.

"Today, you need a massive farm of GPUs or other specialized chips to remain competitive," Determined's three co-founders said in a blog post. The drug discovery workload, for example, saw customer Recursion use 64 V100 GPUs and 120 Pascal GPUs on Google's Cloud Platform.

The co-founders added: "These problems aren’t unique to vision or academic research – they’re affecting organizations large and small, as we are hearing from our thriving open source community."

With HPE having built out its supercomputer business with the acquisitions of SGI and Cray, Determined hopes to become part of its growing everything-as-a-service offering, Greenlake.

Determined said that it will rapidly expand its headcount following the acquisition, and build features for HPE's more global audience. It currently claims a number of customers across pharmaceuticals, autonomous vehicles, defense contracting, and manufacturing.

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