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Nvidia lowers the barrier to entry into A.I. with Fleet Command and LaunchPad

Nvidia is expanding its artificial intelligence (A.I.) offerings as part of its continued effort to “democratize A.I.” The company announced two new programs today that can help businesses of any size to train and deploy A.I. models without investing in infrastructure. The first is A.I. LaunchPad, which gives enterprises access to a stack of A.I. infrastructure and software, and the second is Fleet Command, which helps businesses deploy and manage the A.I. models they’ve trained.

At Computex 2021, Nvidia announced the Base Command platform that allows businesses to train A.I. models on Nvidia’s DGX SuperPod supercomputer.  Fleet Command builds on this platform by allowing users to simulate A.I. models and deploy them across edge devices remotely. With an Nvidia-certified system, admins can now control the entire life cycle of A.I. training and edge deployment without the upfront cost.

laptop running Nvidia Fleet Command software.

Fleet Command and Base Command are part of the larger A.I. LaunchPad program at Nvidia. LaunchPad covers the entire hardware and software stack for training A.I. models and deploying applications.

Nvidia’s first partner for the program is Equinix, which currently has more than 220 data centers across five continents. Nvidia is slotting the DGX supercomputer into some of these data centers to speed up A.I. development in locations where businesses need it most. The company said it will announce regional availability later, including information on multiple rollout phases. In a press briefing, an Nvidia spokesperson said that the platform will likely launch in the U.S. as part of the first phase.

LaunchPad uses a pay-per-hour consumption model, opening up the possibility of prototyping A.I. applications with limited startup cost. Nvidia hasn’t announced pricing details yet. The company will also offer extended usage options when the program rolls out later this summer.

For the software side of things, Nvidia offers the Nvidia A.I. Enterprise suite, which is a set of software tools that run on VMware vSphere. With the software suite and vSphere running an Nvidia-certified system, businesses can deploy A.I. in Equinix data centers with “near bare-metal performance.”

LaunchPad — and by extension, Base Command and Fleet Command — opens up a lot of possibilities for businesses. From tracking inventory on retail shelves to speeding up radiology results, the platform promises an easy-to-use set of software that makes it much easier and cheaper for businesses to start using A.I. in day-to-day operations.

“Today’s enterprises are looking for a simple, comprehensive solution that provides instant access to the resources they need … LaunchPad puts A.I. at the fingertips of enterprises everywhere with fully automated, hybrid-cloud infrastructure and software for every stage of the A.I. life cycle,” said Manuvir Das, head of enterprise computing at Nvidia.

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