Artificial Intelligence

Baidu's open-source edge computing platform will add more AI capabilities to self-driving cars

The Chinese search giant is offering edge computing solutions to augment their cloud computing offerings.

At CES 2019 on Wednesday, Chinese search giant Baidu introduced OpenEdge, an edge computing platform which the company is demonstrating for environmental detection tasks for cars, drones, and other moving systems. OpenEdge-powered devices can use the software stack for "data collection, message distribution, function compute, AI inference, and cloud synchronization," according to a press release.

SEE: CES 2019: Special Coverage (CNET)

OpenEdge is the local component of Baidu Intelligent Edge, a commercial Software as a Service (SaaS) offering that is part of Baidu's cloud services, though the company notes it is also compatible with models "trained on mainstream AI frameworks such as PaddlePaddle and TensorFlow." Likewise, "devices deployed with BIE will be able to seamlessly exchange data with Baidu ABC Intelligent Cloud, perform filtering calculation on sensitive data, and also cache data, perform standalone computing, and provide real-time feedback control when without network or when network connection is unstable."

SEE: CES 2019 news, photos, videos, and more (TechRepublic on Flipboard)

Baidu is releasing two products leveraging the OpenEdge platform. The BIE-AI-BOX is developed in cooperation with Intel, and "connects with cameras in vehicles to optimize video analysis and will officially provide AI apps for road recognition, car body monitoring, and driver's behavior recognition." The BIE-AI-Board is developed in cooperation with NXP Semiconductor, and can be embedded into other hardware-even as small as drones-for detection tasks.

SEE: CES 2019: The Big Trends for Business (ZDNet Special Feature)

Baidu and Ford announced a collaboration for self-driving cars last October, with the pair anticipating a launch of fully autonomous ride-sharing vehicles by 2021. Cars have been a central focus off CES, with Intel Mobileye bringing autonomous cars to Beijing by 2022, and connected and semi-autonomous concepts from Hyundai, Qualcomm, and Toyota, as well as this sweaty butt robot designed by Ford.

Baidu has not specified the license terms of the open source components of OpenEdge, or pricing or availability information for BIE-AI-BOX or BIE-AI-Board.

The big takeaways for tech leaders:

  • OpenEdge is the local component of Baidu Intelligent Edge, a commercial SaaS offering, which is a component of Baidu's cloud services.
  • The company is releasing two hardware products, BIE-AI-BOX or BIE-AI-Board which leverage the OpenEdge platform.

Also see

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Image: V2images/iStock

About James Sanders

James Sanders is a technology writer for TechRepublic. He covers future technology, including quantum computing, AI, and 5G, as well as cloud, security, open source, mobility, and the impact of globalization on the industry, with a focus on Asia.

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