Highlights from IDF 16 in San Francisco: Day 2

The second day of IDF 2016 San Francisco has come to a close.  I started off the day by taking in a keynote presented in equal parts by Murthy Renduchintala and Diane Bryant.  Sandwiched between customer meetings I indulged in a handful of Technical Sessions.  I also spent some time walking around the Technology Showcase checking out the wares from our sponsors and partners.

Dr. Renduchintala's portion of the keynote focused largely on the continuing explosion of data surrounding us and how this is creating an inflection point on the path to 5G.  Guests on stage included Jonathan Shipman of Twitch* and gamer commentator/vlogger Sonja Reid.  Moderating a panel discussion on 5G was IoT authority Stacy Higginbotham.  The panel itself was comprised of (in addition to Dr. Renduchintala): Tom Keathley of AT&T*, Seizo Onoe of NTT docomo*, and John Gordon of GE*.  Predictions ranged from LTE having another 10 years of life to pre-standards 5G deployments happening by 2018 and standards-based 5G deployments by 2020.

Up next was Diane Bryant’s keynote.  Diane spoke about a future of thousands of clouds delivering millions of services to billions of devices.  That’s a lot of zeroes.  Aligned to that vision was an announcement of Intel® Rack Scale Design (version 1.0), engineered to support the disaggregation of compute, network and storage resources in the data center.  Designed to help manage the resources in these data centers of the future, the open telemetry framework Snap was also highlighted.  Diane then went on to introduce Intel® Silicon Photonics with the help of Kushagra Vaid from Microsoft* describing how these devices can provide 100 Gbps connectivity between rows in the data center, with a path to 400 Gbps to individual racks in the near future.

In a bit of a comical exchange with Diane Bryant, John Donovan of AT&T was brought on stage after AT&T was described as the “+1” in the “Super 7 + 1”, and poked a little fun about being labeled the “+1”.  Getting back on script, AT&T’s focus on virtualizing networks was called out as exemplifying leadership in their industry.

The theme of the keynote then switched to machine learning, and Slater Victoroff of indico(*) talked about how well Intel® Xeon Phi™ and Intel Xeon® processors are suited to text and image analysis workloads.  Following Slater Victoroff was Jing Wang of Baidu discussing the benefits of Intel architecture for Artificial Intelligence workloads.  This all set the stage for a teaser on the upcoming Knights Mill- the next generation Intel® Xeon Phi™ processor.

After the morning keynote I took in the following Technical Sessions:

See below for some pictures taken throughout the course of today.  I will be sticking around for most of day 3 on the 18th, but work life balance calls and it’s time to see how my daughter likes (I hope) her new elementary school firsthand.  Accordingly, tomorrow’s blog edition may end up being a bit briefer compared to my earlier ones, but at least it will be a faster read for you all…  🙂

And that's how you design for machine learning...
And that's how you design for machine learning...


Chris O'Flaherty showing off Intel Optane Technology
Chris O'Flaherty showing off Intel® Optane™ Technology


Wicked fast...
Wicked fast...


If you haven't already, check out Day 0 and Day 1 coverage of IDF 2016. 


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About Ken LeTourneau

Ken LeTourneau has been with Intel for 20 years and is a Solutions Architect focused on Big Data and Artificial Intelligence. He works with leading software vendors on architectures and capabilities for Big Data solutions with a focus on analytics. He provides a unique perspective to leading IT decision makers on why AI is important for 21st century organizations, advising them on architectural best practices for deploying and optimizing their infrastructure to meet their needs. Previously, Ken served as an Engineering Manager and Build Tools Engineer in Intel's Graphics Software Development and Validation group. He got his start as an Application Developer and Application Support Specialist in Intel's Information Technology group.