Startups Pack GTC Israel as Smallest of Them All Sweeps Top Inception Award

NVIDIA’s third GPU Technology Conference in just over a month spilled across Tel Aviv’s convention center this week, in a packed show featuring a live demo of an AI-infused apple-picking drone, a student-built autonomous Formula One car and a two-person company that ran away with the title of Israel’s hottest startup.

The second annual GTC Israel show drew 2,000 attendees, up 75 percent from last year, on the back of recent sellout crowds in at GTCs in Tokyo and Munich. It was wall to wall with the companies that have won Israel the moniker of “startup nation.” Indeed, there are more than 4,000 tech startups in a country of 8.5 million, or 40x the density of startups in the U.S.

None flew higher at the show than Inception award winner TheWhollySee, a winkingly named shop with just two full-time employees that creates high-fidelity image datasets for training and certifying the AI brains of autonomous vehicles.

Its founder, Dan Yanson, said the first thing he’d do with the prize — $100,000 in cash plus an NVIDIA DGX Station personal AI supercomputer — is to bring his two part-timers fully on board.

“My first reaction? I’m just overwhelmed,” said Yanson, who studied in Sweden and Russia before completing his Ph.D. from the University of Glasgow. “We’re really a baby company — it’s a small team, we haven’t raised a lot of money yet and the competition was extremely strong. The prize money is a great boost, but it’s the DGX Station that will be a springboard to accelerate us, both in terms of our technology and our business.”

Yanson competed against seven other startups — in fields that included healthcare, agriculture, retail and esports — in a back-to-back series of five-minute presentations and then Q&A with a four-person panel. He briskly described the company’s ability to infuse imagery into the foreground of scenes to more rapidly train neural networks for self-driving cars

The Inception awards, which drew a crowd of more than 300 sitting largely nightclub style in a soaring black-walled space, capped off a day that had started with a blistering keynote about NVIDIA’s mission to accelerate computing by NVIDIA Chief Scientist Bill Dally.

Dally announced that NVIDIA has just named a long-time Google Brain researcher, Gal Chechik, to the newly created position of Israel Research Head. Chechik’s mission: to build a world-class team focused on research into deep learning for smarter perception — including combining vision with language and knowledge, learning to generalize more broadly, and understanding complex data.

Along with some 450 individuals who received training from the Deep Learning Institute and 50+ talks by AI experts, the show included a teeming exhibition hall.

Among its hottest draws was a large netted structure where Tevel Aerobotics showed off its autonomous drone which can gingerly pick, thin and prune fruit trees, relieving the labor crunch in the agriculture sector, while helping farmers’ margins.

And a team of undergrads from Israel’s top-ranked Technion University showed off their side project developing an AI-powered mini-Formula One car, which they’re in the process of converting from gas-powered to all electric.

Other finalists in the Inception awards included:

Blink (esports) — Aiming at the rapidly growing esports market, the company focuses on what it estimates as 600 million gamers and gaming enthusiasts who want to share their favorite moments online. Its platform focuses on the social side of esports by automatically detecting great gaming moments, saving them and making them easily shareable online.

IBEX Medical Analytics (Healthcare) — This two-year-old startup applies AI and big data to support pathologists in diagnosing types of cancer. Its work is focused on developing products that improve clinical decision making, streamline laboratory workflows and enable predictive, personalized cancer treatments.

Jungo Connectivity (Automotive) — This Cisco spinoff offers in-car AI software focused on no-driver monitoring and cabin sensing, enabling vehicles to make better decisions and protect their driver and passengers. Its CoDriver SDK provides deep learning, machine learning and computer vision algorithms to OEMs and tier-1 suppliers, enabling them to create next-gen driver and occupant monitoring systems.

Tevel Aerobotics (Agriculture) — This two-year-old startup addresses the shortage of labor in the agricultural sector, by developing a fleet of autonomous airborne drones for picking, thinning and pruning fruit trees, enhancing productivity and saving costs. It promotes its solution as cost effective, flexible, easy to operate and enabling fruit trees to grow higher, thus maximizing yields and improving farmers’ margins.

TRACXPOiNT (Retail) — Aiming to bring the convenience of online shopping to retail, the company has created an AI-infused, self-checkout shopping cart. Using visual detection with deep learning capabilities, its AIC cart recognizes customers, transfers their shopping list to its monitor, automatically finds and recognizes products, while offering coupons, and provides automatic checkout.

Voiceitt (Healthcare) — Its proprietary technology enables individuals with non-standard speech — such as stroke victims or those with muscle-related disabilities — to have their vocal expressions translated into clear speech, in real time. Its technology can be integrated with smart assistants, such as Alexa, to provide new levels of independence for those otherwise unable to carry out many simple actions.

WayCare (Smart Cities) — In a world of ever-worsening traffic conditions, the company is focusing on providing municipalities with the ability to harness in-vehicle information and traffic data to optimize roadways. It uses CCTVs, traffic accident information, telematics, traffic detectors, weather forecasts and other data sources to extract, compile and analyze data for improving traffic flows.

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Startups Pack GTC Israel as Smallest of Them All Sweeps Top Inception Award

NVIDIA’s third GPU Technology Conference in just over a month spilled across Tel Aviv’s convention center this week, in a packed show featuring a live demo of an AI-infused apple-picking drone, a student-built autonomous Formula One car and a two-person company that ran away with the title of Israel’s hottest startup. The second annual GTC Read article >

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Israel’s Constellation of Startups Using NVIDIA DGX Station to Polish Their Stars

A host of startups at the GPU Technology Conference in Israel this week are showing off the extraordinary acceleration gains and efficiency the NVIDIA DGX Station provides for their deep-learning work.

Companies like Cognata — which creates technology for testing autonomous vehicles in VR and won last year’s $100,000 Inception award at GTC Israel — praise DGX Station, the world’s first personal AI supercomputer, for accelerating their work up to 10x.

Another startup, TRACXPOiNT, which is creating an AI-infused shopping cart, recouped the cost of purchasing its DGX Station within two months, based on what it saved in paying for using GPU instances in the cloud.

“It’s no exaggeration to say that we depend on our DGX Station every day, sometimes every hour of every day,” said Danny Atsmon, CEO of Cognata. “It’s an enormous advantage in speeding up our work and getting to market fast.”

Indeed, the DGX Station provides enormous computing muscle — 500 teraflops of deep learning punch. That’s thanks to four Tesla V100 GPUs, NVLink interconnect technology, and 20,480 NVIDIA CUDA cores.

While it provides the computing power of over 400 CPUs, it uses only about one-twentieth as much power. It creates only one-tenth the noise of a workstation — about as quiet as a typical office ventilation system.

An integrated system purpose-built for AI, DGX Station comes with fully optimized hardware and software. This enables companies to get started in just an hour, compared with potentially a month of setup time required to build similar systems.

DGX Station’s deep learning and analytics performance is unmatched, providing:

  • 72x the deep-learning performance of CPU servers
  • more than 100x the speedup for analyzing large datasets versus a 20-node Spark server cluster
  • full versatility for both deep learning training and inferencing at over 30,000 images a second.

Here’s how four of Israel’s hottest young companies use DGX Station.

Cognata

It’s estimated that an autonomous car would need 11 billion miles of test drives to achieve the same level of accuracy as a human driver. Cognata puts that within reach by using state-of-the-art deep learning simulation to test vehicles in virtual reality through computer-generated landscapes, complete with other cars, pedestrians, buildings and varying weather conditions.

By using a DGX Station, Cognata shaved off years of training time, accelerating its efforts by 10x beyond what it could achieve even in a GPU-powered workstation. The system enables its team to simultaneously run dozens of training jobs. So Cognata can rack up millions of virtual miles on which it can finetune autonomous responses.

AnyVision

AnyVision, which has grown to more than 170 employees in just four years, applies proprietary technology and convolutional neural networks to provide face, body and object detection. It enables capabilities such as facial recognition for ticketless entry to sporting events and visual identification for two-factor authentication for banking applications.

DGX Station enables AnyVision to train 8x faster than on a sophisticated GPU-powered workstation, while detecting individual identities against a database of 115 million faces in 200 milliseconds.

NovellusDx

This Jerusalem-based startup monitors the effects of mutations and drugs on cancer patients, enabling oncologists to provide precision, personalized treatments.

Using DGX Station, NovellusDX was able to train 4x faster by eliminating the need for large data transfers to the cloud and save $70,000 on an annual basis, for an eight-month payback period.

NovellusDX also improved its accuracy by a factor of 10x in using its own deep learning framework to quantify the level of intra-cellular signaling pathway activity from millions of images of mutating cells.

TRACXPOiNT

This startup is bringing the convenience of online shopping to retail with an AI-powered shopping cart that visually recognizes items in stores, communicates with suppliers to get real-time offers, and enables shoppers to pay digitally for their cart’s contents without stopping to scan items at the checkout counter.

TRACXPOiNT’s cart is fully integrated with hardware and GPU-accelerated software. Training on a DGX Station provided a 3x performance increase, and the company made its money back after just two months of 24/7 training versus GPU-accelerated cloud solutions. It conducts inferencing using TensorRT software running on the NVIDIA Jetson embedded platform, which enables it to recognize up to 100,000 different products in under a second.

Join the more than 3,200 NVIDIA Inception program partners and get started on your AI innovation with DGX Station.

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Israel’s Constellation of Startups Using NVIDIA DGX Station to Polish Their Stars

A host of startups at the GPU Technology Conference in Israel this week are showing off the extraordinary acceleration gains and efficiency the NVIDIA DGX Station provides for their deep-learning work. Companies like Cognata — which creates technology for testing autonomous vehicles in VR and won last year’s $100,000 Inception award at GTC Israel — Read article >

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17 Startups Driving the Automotive Future at GTC Israel

At GTC Israel this week, 17 automotive startups showcased the latest developments in autonomous driving, connectivity and mobility services.

The young companies are developing on NVIDIA DRIVE, taking advantage of Israel’s fast-paced, flexible startup culture to speed the deployment of safe self-driving on public roads.

With the help of high-performance, energy-efficient compute from the NVIDIA DRIVE platform, these companies are moving the industry forward with breakthrough technologies.

From emergency response to simulation testing to thermal sensors, GTC exhibitors are taking novel approaches self-driving systems. Here’s a look at a few of the startups helping drive the future of the automotive industry in Israel.

Sensing Innovation

Most of the industry agrees that self-driving cars require a trio of sensor types: camera, radar and lidar. However, for truly advanced pedestrian and object detection, Israeli startup AdaSky contends that thermal sensors must be included in the mix.

The company’s Viper sensor can measure heat from objects surrounding the car, using algorithms running on the NVIDIA DRIVE platform to classify them as humans, vehicles or other objects. The state-of-the-art sensor can be easily incorporated into any autonomous driving or advanced driver assistance system for an added layer of safety.

Sensors inside the car can be just as important as those outside. Before Level 5 driverless vehicles hit the road, drivers must still pay attention and be able to take back control. That’s why Jungo Connectivity has integrated its AI software into the NVIDIA DRIVE IX intelligent experience platform for advanced driver monitoring. The company’s algorithms can help detect whether a driver’s attention is on the road while they are driving or advanced driver assistance systems are operating.

Guardian Optical Technologies is also developing in-cabin sensing technology, making it more affordable and more efficient for manufacturers to implement driver and passenger detection on a single sensor. Backed by NVIDIA GPU compute, one sensor mounted on the ceiling of the vehicle can track the body positions of the driver and passengers in the car to enable safety and convenience features.

Pioneering Software

Autonomous vehicles must be tested and validated before operating on public roads. Software startup Cognata builds detailed simulation environments, allowing manufacturers to perform these tests in any condition, over and over again, before the rubber ever meets the road.

Cognata simulates driving environments for autonomous vehicle testing and validation.

Cognata, which won the NVIDIA Inception startup award at last year’s GTC Israel, is integrating its world-building simulation algorithms into the open NVIDIA DRIVE Constellation platform.

A Tactile Mobility map marking the varying road gradients around Haifa, Israel.

For safe autonomous driving, cars can’t just see the world around them, they must also be able to feel it. With software from Tactile Mobility, vehicles can interpret information such as road grade and tire grip from data collected by sensors on the vehicle. Using the NVIDIA DRIVE platform, the vehicle can fuse this data for a comprehensive view of its surroundings.

In addition to startups, students showcased innovative technology at this year’s GTC Israel. Researchers at Israel Technion University demonstrated their Formula 1 autonomous vehicle project on the event floor. Fresh off a driverless run on public roads in Israel, the car uses high-performance compute from NVIDIA DRIVE to run autonomous driving software.

Learn more about NVIDIA DRIVE partners in Israel and watch this year’s keynote.

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17 Startups Driving the Automotive Future at GTC Israel

At GTC Israel this week, 17 automotive startups showcased the latest developments in autonomous driving, connectivity and mobility services. The young companies are developing on NVIDIA DRIVE, taking advantage of Israel’s fast-paced, flexible startup culture to speed the deployment of safe self-driving on public roads. With the help of high-performance, energy-efficient compute from the NVIDIA Read article >

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How 20 Self-Driving Demos Wowed GTC Europe with Diversity and Innovation

From race cars to school buses to street sweepers, an autonomous vehicle for every need is on display at GTC Europe. At the region’s premiere AI conference this week in Munich, NVIDIA DRIVE ecosystem partners demonstrated concepts and prototypes of an autonomous future. With more than 20 vehicles of all shapes and sizes at the Read article >

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How 20 Self-Driving Demos Wowed GTC Europe with Diversity and Innovation

From race cars to school buses to street sweepers, an autonomous vehicle for every need is on display at GTC Europe.

At the region’s premiere AI conference this week in Munich, NVIDIA DRIVE ecosystem partners demonstrated concepts and prototypes of an autonomous future. With more than 20 vehicles of all shapes and sizes at the event, it’s clear autonomy is spreading to virtually everything on wheels.

With a range of companies leveraging NVIDIA technology to make autonomous driving a reality, the possibilities for new forms of mobility are endless. Here’s a look at how a few NVIDIA partners are envisioning the new automotive era.

Haulin’ MaaS

When there’s no need for a human driver, vehicle designs can provide more space for passengers. Additionally, driverless vehicles can operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week without needing a break. This combination of roomier cars and increased availability facilitates more shared services for convenient and efficient transportation, a vision known as mobility-as-a-service (MaaS).

Continental CUbE at GTC Europe

For urban transit, global supplier Continental is developing CUbE, the Continental Urban moBility Experience. The autonomous shuttle, which will be powered by the NVIDIA DRIVE AGX Pegasus supercomputer, aims to increase efficiency in urban areas by enabling more shared rides and reducing space-consuming parking structures.

VW Sedric at GTC Europe

To provide a customized experience, Volkswagen has developed the Sedric driverless vehicle concept. The shuttle comes in various flavors, from an office-on-wheels to a roving dancefloor to a futuristic school bus — all serving to meet various travel needs in an autonomous age.

A Clean Sweep for AVs

Removing the driver’s seat doesn’t only create more room for passengers, it also makes it easier to design vehicles for logistics and other labor-intensive tasks.

Einride at GTC Europe

Einride is a Swedish startup developing self-driving vehicles for hauling cargo. Its first vehicle, the T-pod, is tailor-made to carry heavy loads of cargo pallets. Its sibling, the T-log, is designed to transport lumber, easing logistics bottlenecks in the timber industry. Both robotrucks will take advantage of the high-performance compute of the NVIDIA DRIVE AGX platform to operate without a human driver.

Enway at GTC Europe

Crowded conferences can create a mess in the neighborhood. Luckily, Enway brought along its autonomous street sweeper. Using deep neural networks, the Enway street sweeper can plan a path ahead and classify objects as trash, leaving clean pavement in its wake.

Sleek Self-Driving

Audi Elaine at GTC Europe

The Audi Elaine is a concept car for Level 4 autonomous driving, which doesn’t require any human intervention in defined conditions. The sporty vehicle would run a more advanced version of Audi’s zFas assisted driving platform, powered by NVIDIA.

Porsche Mission E at GTC Europe

Luxury carmaker Porsche is leveraging NVIDIA technology to create an even more premium experience in the vehicle, such as the Porsche Mission E. The automaker’s first all-electric vehicle, the Mission E is a sleek leader into the future of electromobility.

Commuting, logistics, city services and even joy riding are being transformed by autonomous driving. Learn more about how NVIDIA partners are moving the world forward with self-driving technology.

 

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Medical Startup Scrubs Operating Room Data to Train Better Surgeons

Tweezers carefully poised, the surgeon gingerly attempts to extract the patient’s funny bone. But the hand slips — buzz! — and another round of the classic board game Operation is lost.

operation game
It takes a steady hand to win a game of Operation. It takes much more to make a skilled surgeon.

At best, the game, which first went on sale in the 1960s, might identify children with the steady grip and hand-eye coordination of a future surgeon.

Today, NVIDIA GPUs are powering a vastly more sophisticated set of surgery training tools that can walk surgical residents and medical teams step by step through a procedure.

Built by U.K.-based startup Digital Surgery, the mobile app Touch Surgery helps medical professionals learn procedures or prepare for surgical cases with simulations and quizzes.

Now used in more than 150 U.S. residency programs, the app has a reference library of surgical maps and a virtual human patient that trains surgeons to make the right decisions at the right time during a procedure.

Digital Surgery, a member of NVIDIA’s Inception virtual accelerator program, is also developing an operating room tool called GoSurgery. It improves coordination between surgeons and their teams to manage workflows and aid in real-time operating room decisions.

“We know humans aren’t perfect, so we use digital tools to help them improve their capacity,” said Andre Chow, co-founder of Digital Surgery.

No One Asks Who’s the Best Pilot on a Route

When a person needs surgery, the first question they ask is, “Who’s the best surgeon?”

But this mentality doesn’t apply to every industry. Airplane pilots are responsible for the lives of everyone on board — but it’s not typical to think “Who’s the best pilot?” before buying a ticket and stepping onto a flight.

That’s because the airline industry has worked hard to provide a standard level of safety for pilots using tools like autopilot and radars, says Chow. “We believe that should be the case with surgery as well.”

Yet, when Chow and co-founder Jean Nehme were training to become surgeons, they noticed that every surgeon likes to do things slightly differently.

Digital Surgery aims to close the disparities in surgery quality around the world by bolstering the doctors’ skills with powerful software. This technology gives surgeons an interactive way to rehearse operations digitally and learn best practices across different surgical specialties.

Brain Training for Surgeons

The company’s first product, the Touch Surgery app, has a library of surgical videos and simulations with a virtual human patient. The app hosts more than 200 simulations across 15 surgical specialties including orthopedics, neurosurgery and oral surgery.

Surgical residents and healthcare professionals can use the free app to learn, review or rehearse a procedure. Rendered on NVIDIA Quadro GPUs, the simulations test users’ knowledge about correct operating technique. Chow calls it “brain training for surgeons.”

It’s been validated in more than 15 different research publications as an effective mobile training tool. The Digital Surgery team sees the potential for its applications to serve as training aids in areas of the world lacking safe surgical services.

Using simulation footage from the app’s virtual surgeries and hundreds of thousands of surgical videos as a training database, the company developed its second product, the GoSurgery AI platform.

GoSurgery uses operating room camera streams that are fed into its neural network. The algorithms determine which instruments are being used and what stage of the operation the surgeon is in. Each team member has a screen displaying guidance based on the neural network’s real-time inferences.

This operating room platform is powered by NVIDIA embedded technology. It’s currently being used at several sites in the U.K., with plans to expand to the United States as well.

So far, the Digital Surgery team has deployed this solution for eye surgeries and bariatric procedures. They’re also starting to work on colonic surgery and orthopedic operations, among others.

The post Medical Startup Scrubs Operating Room Data to Train Better Surgeons appeared first on The Official NVIDIA Blog.

Medical Startup Scrubs Operating Room Data to Train Better Surgeons

Tweezers carefully poised, the surgeon gingerly attempts to extract the patient’s funny bone. But the hand slips — buzz! — and another round of the classic board game Operation is lost. At best, the game, which first went on sale in the 1960s, might identify children with the steady grip and hand-eye coordination of a Read article >

The post Medical Startup Scrubs Operating Room Data to Train Better Surgeons appeared first on The Official NVIDIA Blog.