From 5G and AI to digital twins, maturing and emerging technologies are becoming further enmeshed in each other and ever more pervasive in daily life
This year’s COMPUTEX Forum, themed Pervasive Intelligence, began yesterday at the Taipei International Conference Center. The first session, titled “Disruptive Trends,” featured senior executives from six major firms that are making an impact on the global digital ecosystem with leading technologies and platforms.
“Enterprises around the world are now trying to achieve digital transformation and industrial upgrades. AI and 5G-driven development, digital twins and blockchain applications are key factors in making this change,” said Walter Yeh, CEO and president of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, the organizer of the forum. “However, it is not only in the business sector; these new advanced technologies have also impacted our lives and our futures.”
“We’re quickly moving towards a world where everyone and everything is intelligently connected,” said Alex Katouzian, senior vice president and general manager of mobile at Qualcomm, which on Monday launched its first 5G PC collaboration with Lenovo at COMPUTEX. “Now we’re moving toward connecting everything to its environment, and at the center of that, everything is gonna get powered by 5G.”
“Imagine you’ll be able to work anywhere … and be able to connect to anybody and to all your data… And the way to do that is to share the compute resource with the cloud edge,” he said, providing as examples seamless on-location video work and real-time translation, bandwidth for which would be provided by 5G.
Katouzian briefed attendees on the history of the firm’s 5G development, including numerous milestones over the past few years, saying that the technology’s rapidly accelerating development has already begun changing connectivity for everyone and every industry.
“5G is here. The device ecosystem is delivering a whole bunch of 5G devices; this is actually the first time that the device ecosystem is slightly ahead of the infrastructure ecosystem,” he said. “Welcome all to the innovation age.”
Highlighting another disruptive and increasingly pervasive technology was Dev Mookerjee, chief technology officer of IBM Watson Solutions for Asia-Pacific, who has more than a decade of experience in artificial intelligence (AI).
AI is now “an accepted technology that we use in business today,” he said, explaining how businesses employ the technology, as well as what is stopping further adoption.
“We have tried very hard over the last many years to simplify it, make it accessible,” because many businesses lack the skills to interact with AI to further implement it, Mookerjee said.
“AI fits a gap in our businesses… We humans, we think differently. We respond differently. We read, learn, interact and make decisions, at scale, but with our gut instincts,” he said. “Machines didn’t work like that. Machines used to work at scale … in data.”
“AI is all about fitting the gap between machines and humans to allow us to work together at scale,” Mookerjee said, highlighting advances in AI and how they are being applied in real-world use. “In IBM, we use the word AI slightly differently… We call it augmenting intelligence… It’s about augmenting people to do their jobs better.”
Guillaume Gerondeau, vice president of transportation and mobility industry in Asia for Dassault Systemes, later shifted the focus to how to disrupt the way new innovations in the digital world are imagined, developed, manufactured and marketed with a digital twin, using his field of expertise, mobility, as an example.
“Experience is going to drive innovation,” Gerondeau said. “If you start from experience, you will start from a real location … for which efficiency of mobility is going to be critical because it’s going to attract more business, more people.”
“Digitalization has major impacts on all players,” he said, highlighting some of the primary benefits of a digital twin, including the ability to develop an entire system virtually and use immersive experiences to convince users as to its feasibility.
A digital twin also allows for disruption to be simulated, which means its progress can then be monitored, Gerondeau said, adding that because it is virtual, it compresses time and saves on costs because no physical prototype is necessary, and it therefore lowers the requirements for entry into established industries.
The second part of this year’s forum, the AI Session, is scheduled for 9:10 a.m. to 12:10 p.m. today at Room 201 of the Taipei International Convention Center. It is to feature speakers from Arm, NVIDIA, Siemens, Micron, Alibaba Cloud and Google.
The third and final portion, the AIoT (AI+IoT) Session, is to take place today at the same venue from 2:10 p.m. to 5:10 p.m. and feature speakers from Intel, Trend Micro, NXP, Advantech, Cyberlink and Supermicro.