At Microsoft Japan’s annual de:code event in Tokyo, Microsoft announced a global alliance partnership with Preferred Networks, the developer of Chainer, an advanced deep learning framework which is popular among developers in various industries. Microsoft and Preferred Networks will promote the use of deep learning and big data technologies. Their partnership involves following three parts:
- Technology – Microsoft will work with Preferred Networks to integrate their deep learning technology (Chainer, ChainerMN, etc) with Microsoft Azure. Chainer MN (multi-node) will have friction-free deployment on hyper-scale GPU clusters to reduce training time for deep neural networks. Microsoft will help make Chainer work great on Windows and in SQL Server 2017 Machine Learning features.
- Education – Microsoft will work together to create deep learning training from beginner to advanced, in order to grow the base of developers with expertise on deep learning technologies.
- Collaboration – Microsoft and Preferred Networks will drive the practical use of deep learning in the market to make digital transformation happen in several industries. They will establish a partner ecosystem to do artificial intelligence consulting and deep learning implementations that solve business challenges by utilizing deep learning.
I think this is a great partnership for both Microsoft and Preferred Networks. Preferred Networks expertise on deep learning with its Chainer toolkit, combined with the power of Microsoft Azure, will enable researchers, data scientists and developers to achieve more.