Facebook parent Meta creates powerful AI supercomputer

Meta, Facebook’s parent company, announced on Monday that it has developed one of the world’s fastest artificial intelligence supercomputers.

The social media behemoth hopes that the machine will aid in the development of the metaverse, a virtual reality construct that will eventually replace the internet as we know it.

Facebook claims that when the computer is finished around the middle of the year, it will be the fastest in the world.

Supercomputers are extremely fast and powerful machines designed to perform complex calculations that a typical home computer cannot. Meta did not reveal the location of the computer or the cost of its construction.

The AI Research SuperCluster is a computer that is already up and running but is still being built. Meta claims it will assist its AI researchers in developing “new and better” artificial intelligence models that can learn from “trillions” of examples, work across hundreds of languages at once, and analyse text, images, and video all at the same time.

Because it relies on the performance of graphics-processing chips, which are useful for running “deep learning” algorithms that can understand what’s in an image, analyse text, and translate between languages, the way Meta defines the power of its computer differs from how conventional and more technically powerful supercomputers are measured, according to Tuomas Sandholm, a computer science professor and co-director of Carnegie Mellon University’s AI centre.

In a blog post, Meta stated, “We hope RSC will help us build entirely new AI systems that can, for example, power real-time voice translations to large groups of people speaking different languages so they can seamlessly collaborate on a research project or play an AR game together.”

The company claims that in training its AI, its supercomputer will use “real-world examples” from its own systems. It claims to have used only open-source and publicly available data sets in the past.

“They’re going to put their customer data on their AI research computer for the first time,” Sandholm said. “Giving AI researchers and algorithms access to all that data would be a huge change.”

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