About a year ago I wrote a blog on the emergence of Artificial Intelligence in the enterprise. Since then we’ve seen a steady increase in the numbers and types of organizations starting to use AI to unlock the value in their data. Indeed, we are in the midst of a continuing deluge of data so it’s no surprise that AI/DL initiatives are kicking off across all sectors of our economy.This is great news, as the technology has matured immensely and the costs to entry have lowered. However, there are a number of steps to be considered as you look to start your AI journey in a sandbox environment. And because it can be a complex undertaking there are lots of questions too. The most important one being “where to start?”The first step is the planning phase. A couple months back I was talking with a customer from the manufacturing sector who wanted to bring a more data-driven approach to their business. The business leaders were concerned that they were falling behind industry competitors in the digital transformation race. The business needed to quickly build and accelerate a data first strategy and he was eager to get going. So, they setup an AI focus group to consider ways to incorporate Machine Learning and Deep Learning into their business lines. The group had executive sponsorship and met monthly over a year however the effort stalled before moving to production. Although the project began with a plan and intent the teams were stymied by the sheer number of available use cases and technology options. At this point they were reaching out to Dell Technologies as an experienced partner, one with a broad and deep solutions portfolio, to move the Proof of Concept (POC) along. Artificial Intelligence Center of Excellence The customer had the right idea with an internal cross functional team focused on AI, aka an AI Center of Excellence. To be successful the team should be comprised of lines of business leaders, developers, engineers, data architects, data scientists and IT staff. In my experience having a diversity of skills and perspectives from different areas of the business, along with executive sponsorship, is key to success. The executive sponsorship is extremely important because you need someone with budget and the authority to make decisions along the way. Once the foundation is laid the team must consider the use cases. They should be both quantifiable and time bound, perhaps reachable in three to six months. As an example, for manufacturing the team might identify a use case to reduce unscheduled machine maintenance by 15 percent. Reducing unscheduled maintenance would save millions by lowering machine down times and reducing energy costs. Another use case might be to reduce defects on the assembly line by 3 percent, which would also have a positive revenue impact.Focused Deep Learning Proof of ConceptNow that our AI Center of Excellence team has their use case it’s time to scope out a proof of concept. To level set expectations, moving from AI idea to production can be intimidating but that’s why experiments are conducted. Just as scientists build experiments to test their hypotheses the business uses prototypes or POCs to test their AI ideas and algorithms. However just because the prototype phase is seen as an experiment doesn’t mean that IT Architecture best practices should not be followed. In fact, it’s just the opposite. By focusing the prototype build-out with production in mind organizations can more quickly transition from sandbox to monetization. Many successful organizations use their POCs to deploy critical foundational elements that will scale. It makes no sense running a POC that takes years to successfully implement. More so, if you’ve deployed a solid IT foundation it’s easier to replicate another one when new use cases and models arise.In the prototype phase architecture plays a critical role. By building a prototype environment with the same building blocks as the scaled-out production environment you will accelerate the time to monetization for each model. However, AI workloads can be tricky. Here are a couple rules they tend to follow. First, our digital world provides an unlimited amount of data points so much so that AI applications must scale with the demand for unstructured data (Petabyte Scale). Second time is an essential factor necessary to answer your AI question so accelerated compute is a must. Therefore, while your solution may start small you need an architecture that can process unstructured data quickly and scale to keep up with the growing unstructured datasets.Entry Level AI Solution Beginning an AI journey is challenging from a business perspective, but the technology doesn’t have to be so. As a proof point we just published a reference architecture for an entry-level AI solution. It includes the world’s most powerful workstation, the Dell Precision 7920 Data Science Workstation, which provides ultimate performance and scalability to grow alongside your AI initiatives and data. It’s coupled with Dell EMC Isilon scale-out NAS to give data science teams the ability to share massive amounts of data while providing high performance, reliability and seamless access from multiple operating systems. And without the need for costly and time-consuming data migration as you move to production. Dell EMC Isilon hybrid storage platforms, powered by the OneFS operating system, use a highly versatile yet simple scale-out storage architecture to speed access to massive amounts of data, while dramatically reducing cost and complexity. The hybrid storage platforms, such as the H400 used here, are highly flexible and strike the balance between large capacity and high-performance storage to provide support for a broad range of enterprise file workloads. The H400 delivers up to 3 GB/s bandwidth per chassis and provides capacity options ranging from 120 TB to 720 TB per chassis.Your journey to AI can take many paths. Choosing the one that begins with a solid plan, use cases and an affordable yet scalable AI prototype is the best route to success. Let Dell Technologies help you navigate: the Entry Level AI Solution referenced here is a great way to get started and to grow.If you want to learn more then please see the Dell Precision Data Science Workstation with Isilon H400 whitepaper. You’ll find the complete reference architecture with reproducible benchmark methodology, hardware and software configuration, sizing guidance and performance measurement tools.
Published on December 9, 2015 at 10:43 pm Contact Michael: [email protected] Alexis Peterson flew up the court on a breakaway and found her way to the basket, drawing contact against Coppin State’s Keena Samuels before rising and dropping in a layup. Peterson thought she had earned herself an opportunity for a traditional three-point play. Instead, the nearby referee whistled for a charge.Syracuse head coach Quentin Hillsman, who expressed frustration with the officials throughout the night, turned away from the play and paced quickly toward the end of SU’s bench. He didn’t stop until nearly walking off the court.When Hillsman turned around, Peterson was standing at halfcourt, staring at him and holding up three fingers, one for each foul she had. With 3:09 remaining in the first half, Hillsman was forced to remove Peterson from the game.“I didn’t want her to get that fourth foul in case the game got tight down the stretch,” Hillsman said.After a red-hot start to Wednesday night’s game, Peterson cooled off once she found herself in foul trouble. She played only 25 minutes, nine fewer than her season average, during Syracuse’s (6-2) 88-56 win over Coppin State (2-6) in the Carrier Dome.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textPeterson scored five points in the game’s first four minutes, first connecting on a runner in the lane and then draining a 3 from the left corner to put the Orange ahead 8-6. By the 7:15 mark of the second quarter, she had registered 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting.“That’s a great floor game,” Hillsman said. “I thought she played tremendous.”But Peterson committed her first foul with just over seven minutes to play in the first half. Two minutes later, she bumped Samuels as she attempted a 3 from the left wing.When a referee called Peterson for that foul, Hillsman shook his head before subbing Peterson out. She re-entered the game 13 seconds before picking up the third foul and leaving again.In the game’s 27 minutes that followed Peterson’s initial foul, she scored just five more points, finishing 6-of-8 from the field with 15 points to go along with five assists.At one point on defense in the fourth quarter, she made a move to try intercepting a pass before choosing to back off and avoid contact. She then raised her arms in the air to signal that she didn’t commit a foul.“(The foul trouble) did kind of bring me back a little bit,” Peterson said.To avoid Peterson falling deeper into foul trouble, Hillsman subbed her out of the game five different times in the latter three quarters. He “probably” could have used her more, he said, but credited strong bench play — Syracuse had 50 points — for making it easier to rotate the guards.Peterson said coming in and out of the game affected her rhythm, but added that she did what she could to “stay mentally ready” and not think too much about her fouls.Said Peterson: “You can’t take them home, so you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+
Last Saturday, Manchester High School hosted the fourth staging of the Charlie Fuller Memorial field events meet. It was founded through the concept to relive the memory of a man who gave sterling support to track and field at the mid-island institution. The chief person who conceptualised the meet, still the engine that drives the event, is the former outstanding sprinter out of the neighbouring parish’s St Elizabeth Technical High School, Carlos Samuels. Issues of coaching leadership at the school have led Samuels elsewhere. Although he works assiduously to ensure otherwise, there is no doubt that the image of the event, could be tarnished. Fuller was a sporting personality, whose contribution to the upliftment and empowerment of the female track and field programme at Manchester High knew no limits. However, there were no geographic boundaries. This columnist recalls a trip to visit the Falmouth home of a girl from Vere Technical, who had been granted a track scholarship, just to offer congratulations and wish bon voyage. MEMORABLE SUNDAY Then came the thought that her younger teammate, slightly errant at times, would benefit from the trip as a motivational tool. The fact that the latter miss lived in Kingston was no hurdle. The stout-hearted benefactor, as was Fuller, journeyed from his Manchester home to the city, collected the young athlete, drove to Trelawny for the visit, returned to Kingston for the drop-off, and made his way home all in one memorable Sunday. The incidents of selflessness, displaying single-minded dedication to the female athletes at “Chester” were numerous. The accompanying, domestic deprivation is best described by his devoted wife, Olive. With what Mr Fuller gave to Manchester High during the years he substantially funded the track and field programme the areas of controversy surrounding the introduction and subsequent staging of the meet are unfortunate. There is a threatening situation that needs to be set right if the memory of the peaceful and non-contentious individual is to be adequately maintained. As this column is being written, former head coach Samuels has taken up duties at a Kingston school. This as the Mandeville school administration ponders an altercation between his assistant, Rahnsomn Edwards, and him. Reports are that there was a physical confrontation and both were placed on suspension. Previous to that development, former head coach Jerry Holness returned from stints overseas and resumed his position, displacing Samuels, who, from all reports, had endeared himself to the athletes. Tales of a fallout in enthusiasm are rife a testimony to the influence Samuels had, and presumably, still has, even from a position external to the programme. Holness, now seemingly firmly in the saddle, has gone for another experienced coach as his assistant in Duane Jarrett. Jarrett was his deputy in the first overseas stint in Dubai. CLOUDS OF UNCERTAINTY With so many offers for Samuels’ talent as a coach and motivator of athletes, it is unlikely that his services will again be available to the Manchester team. What seems more likely is that with or without his invitation, some will want to take up residence within his new programme if logistically permissible. With all these clouds of uncertainty, where does this leave the event held to commemorate the excellence promoted and sustained by Fuller that was Manchester High School under his canopy of passionate support and stewardship? It must be remembered that even the inception of the event was contested by the organisers of the long-standing JAAA/Puma Invitational, held simultaneously crosstown at Kirkvine. They were not amused that competition would be coming from persons who once were aligned to their event. It is to the credit of the opposing parties and some fruitful dialogue following disruptive stand-offs that good sense triumphed and they can now coexist. An existing destructive culture may not allow this harmony to persist. Whatever happens, the CFMFEM should not suffer. The legacy of Charlie, his spirit of goodwill and malice to no one, need to be sustained. Foster’s Fairplay issues a fervent call for constant interaction with the parties to lift and sustain the positive direction in which the meet is now trending. It is incumbent on these stakeholders to ensure that this takes place. Do not allow the memory of this great man to be sullied in any way. – For Feedback, email: [email protected]