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Intel extends cloud research to consumer devices

Intel is opening up two research centres at Carnegie Mellon university that will develop technology around delivery of real-time information to consumer electronics aggregated from millions of cloud sources, the company said.

“Intel is investing US$30 million in the cloud and embedded computing research centres, which will focus on areas such as the analysis of ‘big data’ — massive amounts of online data — and increasing the relevance of information delivered to client devices,” said Intel spokeswoman Connie Brown. “For example, a futuristic pair of sunglasses with Internet connectivity and a digital information handler could receive information from the Internet based on what is in sight, such as information about a person or a product on sale,” she added.

Intel has invested millions in research around visual computing and security, but recently has been pouring resources into cloud research, the company said. Intel’s cloud presence has largely been restricted to handling transactions at the server level, with its processors used in most data centres worldwide. Through the investment, Intel in the future hopes to become relevant on handheld and wearable devices, which are increasingly pulling more through social networks and searches.

“More data is being stored online, and the key to speedily delivering relevant information is by analysing data in the best way possible,” said Greg Granger, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Carnegie Mellon. ” For example, the research could result in pulling together the cloud’s massive data and computing resources to provide real-time language translation services via handheld devices,” he explained.

“You don’t do that by getting together the best linguists in the world,” Granger said. “The very best interpreters are being created by automatically generating the translation from large amounts of data that happens to be translated already into multiple languages by human experts.”

“The centre will also focus on development of relevant applications for client devices to access cloud resources,” Granger said.

Though the cloud research centre is located at Carnegie Mellon, which is based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, many universities will be involved in the research, Intel said. Intellectual property generated will be opened up for adoption.

The research is an extension of what Intel calls the “Cloud 2015 vision,” which is aimed at improving cloud implementation in data centers. Intel is working with other companies so services can be delivered effectively through dynamic resource allocation and secure data sharing between external and internal clouds. The company also focuses on reference architectures for cloud deployments and cloud hardware such a “cloud-in-the-box,” a small server based on Intel hardware that integrates networking, security and virtualisation technologies.

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