Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Hackers Can Remotely Control Intel Servers -- Even if they are turned off

According to the Hacker News, there are massive security flaws in the Management Engine of Intel servers. One of the security hole is CVE-2017-5705). It has multiple buffer overflow issues in the operating system kernel for Intel ME Firmware that could allow attackers to "load and execute code outside the visibility of the user and operating system."

The piece states that "As long as the system is connected to a line power and a network cable, these remote functions can be performed out of band even when the computer is turned off as it operates independently of the operating system."

The worst thing is that such security breaches can be done without the knowledge of system administrators, because they execute in the firmware that manages and controls the server hardware and software.

Read more at https://thehackernews.com/2017/11/intel-chipset-flaws.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+TheHackersNews+

Monday, November 13, 2017

TensorFlow for AMD Radeon Will Break Nvidia Monopoly

Nvdia has established a virtual monopoly in the artificial intelligence and machine learning arena through its CUDA. Jensen Huang openly acknowledged this. When asked by analysts what Nvidia's advantages are in the AI/ML world, Huang said it's about CUDA. Indeed, the most popular ML framework, TensorFlow, supports CUDA and thus Nvidia GPUs only. Even if you are an AMD loyalist and have bought an AMD VEGA GPU, if you want to do some TensorFlow or Keras work today, you need a NVIDIA GPU. A GTX 1060 seems to be the minimum requirement for AI. But things are changing.

The lack of ML software support in AMD GPUs has attracted attention. A company named Vertex.AI has released an open source machine learning engine called PlaidML. It is based on OpenCL and its initial benchmarks show great promise for AMD Radeon, which has superior compute performance. Unfortunately, plaidML is still in development and lacks support for recurrent neural networks.

Today, AMD announced that its new ROCm 1.7 and MIOpen library will have TensorFlow support. Since Keras runs on top of TensorFlow, Radeon owners can also enjoy their GPU's AI power with a much nicer and easier to use programming interface.

What does this mean for Nvidia? Its near monopoly in AI/ML will be broken. Nvidia will have to share the fledgling AI market with AMD.

This is no less than a sea change. Coupled with Intel's adoption of AMD GPU technology in its mobile platforms, Nvidia's revenue will suffer intolerance decline and its lebensraum will see rapid shrinking.