Hailo Released Samples of 26TOPS AI Processor

Hailo from Tel Aviv announced the the first samples of its Hailo-8 Deep Learning Processor were delivered to selected partners, mainly from the automotive industry. To allow running  deep learning applications on the edge devices, Hailo re-designed the main pillars of computer architecture: memory, control, and compute and added  a comprehensive Software Development Kit (SDK) co-developed with the hardware.

The result is a 16 nano-meter chip produced by TSMC capable of delivering up to 26 Tera Operations Per Second (TOPS). The company said that during ResNet-50 benchmark tests, Hailo-8 outperformed Nvidia’s Xavier AGX and consumed almost 20 times less power while performing the same tasks. Hailo was established in 2017 by former members of the Israel Defense Forces’  intelligence unit.

AI Beyond the Cloud

Its deep learning processor is designed to run complex algorithms  on autonomous vehicles, smart cameras, smartphones, drones, AR/VR platforms, and wearable devices. The company said it is now working in cooperation with tier-1 automotive companies on advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), and with major players in smart city and smart home markets, to empower powerful IoT devices.

“In recent years, we’ve witnessed an ever-growing list of applications unlocked by deep learning, which were made possible thanks to server-class GPUs,” said Orr Danon, CEO of Hailo. “However,  there is a crucial need for an analogous architecture that replaces processors of the past, enabling deep learning to run devices at the edge. Hailo’s chip was designed from the ground up to do just that.”

Walmart Acquired Natural Language Startup Aspectiva

Walmart adopts Artificial Intelligence software to enhance the end-to-end shopping experience. The company announced that it has acquired Aspectiva, an Israeli-based start-up from Tel aviv, for an undisclosed sum of money. Aspectiva will be joining Walmart’s Store N8, the incubation arm launched by the retailer in 2017 to uncover the ideas that will transform the future of commerce.

Aspectiva has built an Artificial Intelligence software suite to analyzes consumer opinions and turning them into valuable insights in order to help eCommerce visitors to make informed decisions resulting in increased online conversion rates. By applying deep Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning, Aspectiva surfaces what people say about any product and understands what they feel about it. The software automatically identifies product attributes shoppers talk about by analyzing massive volumes of user generated content.

Aspectiva was founded in 2013 by Ezra Daya, Eyal Hurwitz and Yoad Arad. Prior to founding Aspectiva, The CEO Ezra Daya managed the global Text Analytics group at NICE Systems. The CTO Eyal Hurwitz is also a veteran of NICE Systems where he served as a senior scientist and led innovative initiatives, including international collaborations. Yoad Arad, VP Business Development, held senior sales roles at Clicktale, McAfee (Intel Security) and ECI.

“Aspectiva has developed incredibly sophisticated machine learning techniques and natural language processing capabilities, which are areas we believe will have profound impact on how customers will shop in the future,” said Lori Flees, Principal of Store N8. This is not the first activity for Walmart with Israeli-based technology companies. It has also made a strategic investment in Team8, an Israeli think tank and tech incubator, launched a joint venture with Eko, an interactive media and technology company with offices in Tel Aviv and New York, and recently joined The Bridge, a technology accelerator connecting global companies with the start-up community in Israel.

D-ID Launched Anti-Face Recognition Product

Photo above: Illustration to demonstrate Protected image vs Unprotected image

The surprising start-up company from Tel Aviv, D-ID, has officially announced its initial product at TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco 2018 this week . The company has developed a solution that protects photos and videos of organizations from face recognition, while keeping them similar to the human eye. The company serves organizations that store photos and videos of employees, customers or citizens, amog them cloud storage providers, social networks, financial institutions, health management organizations and governments that want to protect their biometric databases.

The name D-ID originated from the professional term de-identification. D-ID’s first customer is Cloudinary, an image and video management solution which helps more than 350K companies manage, optimize and deliver more than 22B media assets. The company has also signed significant agreements with customers in the financial services and automotive industry.

“Our photos contain biometric data. Using them with face recognition, anyone can track you, hack your devices and steal your identity. That’s why our photos must be protected,” says Gil Perry, CEO and Co-Founder of D-ID. “We’ve moved too fast with face recognition and it is now a threat to our fundamental human right to privacy.” The face recognition market is growing exponentially. It’s increasingly used all around the world: To analyze shopping behavior, to authenticate payments, to access smartphones and even to rank citizens’ or track people in protests.

Faces are “sensitive information”

The company’s approach to digitally manipulating images renders images unreadable by the machine learning tools that are used to identify an individual, but are imperceptible to the human eye. “We use advanced image processing and deep learning to process the photo or video in such a way that it will look similar to the human eye but machines, AI, face recognition classifiers will not be able to recognize the individual,” says Perry. He also mentioned that the solution is constantly inspected by a special “red team” that launch attacks in order to break the protection and reveal weaknesses in its defense.

The issue of image protection draws a public interest. Data privacy regulations like the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which became enforceable in May 2018, address face images as “personal sensitive information” and require companies to protects this data or risk heavy fines and lawsuits. “People are aware and concerned about the security risks of face recognition. Now is the time to protect this data and we are here to make sure it happens,” said Perry.

D-ID was founded in 2017 by CEO Gil Perry, COO Sella Blondheim and CTO Elira Kuta. The founders served in the Israeli Special Forces and intelligence unit 8200. They experienced first-hand the risks to privacy when, due to the sensitive nature of their roles, they were not allowed to share photos on social media. The company received Gartner’s Cool Vendor 2018 recognition. D-ID has raised $4mm led by Pitango Venture Capital with participation from Y Combinator, Maverick Ventures, Foundation Capital and Fenox Venture Capital.