IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems - December 2017 - 13
Stefanie Chiras talks AI and POWER9 in 2018
By Evelyn Hoover k Photography by Jason Griego
s pundits make
predictions for 2018
tech trends, most expect
artificial intelligence (AI) to play
an increasing role in business.
In fact, a Forbes writer put AI
at No. 6 on his list of the top 10
tech trends for the new year.
"So much power remains in
AI-in everything from customer
service and robotics to analytics
and marketing. Companies will
continue to use AI to surprise,
connect and communicate with
their customers in ways they may
not even appreciate or realize,"
the writer said (bit.ly/2yq9yNn).
The increasing focus on AI for
business puts the IBM
Power Systems* platform in a
sweet spot in not only 2018 but
also in the years ahead. IBM has
invested deeply in both hardware
and software for AI and deep
learning, especially as the two
relate to cognitive computing,
according to Stefanie Chiras, vice
president, IBM Cognitive Systems
IBM Systems Magazine, Power
Systems edition, sat down with
Chiras to learn more about what's
on the horizon in 2018 for the
Power Systems platform.
IBM Systems Magazine (ISM):
Various definitions of cognitive exist. What's IBM's definition of cognitive workloads
and cognitive systems?
Stefanie Chiras (SC): Cognitive
workloads don't just transact on
data; they extract insight from vast
amounts of all types of data-private, public, structured, unstructured, streaming, the list goes on.
To implement these workloads
requires a combination of all types
of data sources combined with
advanced analytics, and the software paradigm of neural networks
used in machine learning and
deep learning techniques. These
aggressive workloads drive requirements on the infrastructure and
commodity hardware just can't
keep up. This underpins the need
for cognitive systems, which are
designed for high data throughput
and extreme compute to deliver
workload insights fast enough to
take meaningful action.
ISM: How does cognitive
relate to AI?
SC: Artificial intelligence-or augmented intelligence as it increasingly being referred to-is really
equivalent to the insights from
cognitive workloads. At the highest level, it's about
how computing can mimic the incredible flexibility
of the human brain to process and create context
around massive amounts of data.
While, some stigmas about AI date back to
sci-fi books and films, this isn't about robots and
replacing humans. It's about providing insights
from lots of data to better inform businesses and
humans to make decisions and take action. Each
of us has a certain amount of experience-a certain
set of interactions-that we base our decisions and
our views upon. Cognitive insights and cognitive
workloads provide an additional set of insights
pulled from a vast amount of data and experience.
For example if a person suspects he has melanoma,
he visits the dermatologist. That doctor will assess,
based upon a visual assessment of a mole, its danger
and the ramifications. Then the doctor provides a
diagnosis. With cognitive capabilities, a photo can
Artificial intelligence (AI) can help
organizations derive deeper insights
from data they already have.
Cognitive insights can give IBM clients
a competitive advantage.
The POWER architecture is specifically
designed to work on data better than any
other architecture in the industry.
The POWER9 processor will further improve
data throughput and compute capabilities.
ibmsystemsmag.com DECEMBER 2017 // 13