Intel, Facebook tie up to develop chips for AI

Intel Chief Brian Krzanich said his company is working on a super-fast chip designed specifically for artificial intelligence (AI).

The chip making giant is partnering with Facebook and other Internet titans investing heavily in AI to create the first in what will be a family of “Nervana Neural Network Processors” tailored to the needs of the emerging technology, Krzanich said during an on-stage interview at the WSJD Live conference.

“I think we are just at the beginning of a transformation,” Mr. Krzanich said while discussing why Intel was betting on AI. Artificial intelligence is going to be similar to what the internet was back in the 1990s.”

Chips designed for AI need to deftly handle massive amounts of data and sensor input in real time. Cloud services have been a hotbed for AI innovation, so Intel has partnered with Facebook and other companies in that arena to build a chip tailored from the ground up to meet those needs, according to Krzanich.

“This is the first piece of silicon,” Krzanich said. “We have a whole family planned for this; (Facebook) is helping us, along with others, as to where this is going.”