Graphcore

A data graph that loosely resembles a planetary environment micro-dosing on LSD maps the complex inner workings of a new ‘IPU’ chip.

  • Words: Jack Needham
  • Image: Graphcore

Androids may dream of electric sheep, but inside the mind of the machine learning visualisation software ‘Poplar’, you’ll discover a blooming micro-climate of fluorescent digital neurons and coral-like computerised patterns drenched in a UV glow. Poplar was created by the Bristol-based company Graphcore, a team formed of engineers, developers and several four-legged mascot puppies.

In simple terms Poplar is a data graph, albeit an abstract one, built as a way of visualising the complex inner workings of Intelligent Processing Units (IPU) which process visual data; an MRI scanner for an artificially intelligent ‘brain’, if you will. Resembling a planetary environment micro-dosing on LSD this particular graph is a mapping of the deep learning tool ResNet 18 and the routes their IPU’s follow to communicate with themselves. Here, millions of vertices and edges have been converted to further understand, and make understandable, how machines process thought and reason in technicolour.

Article taken from
Articles

Further Reading

Pluto’s Horizon

Two-thirds the size of the moon, the distant dwarf planet Pluto is easily overlooked, and yet recent discoveries could make it the most exciting body in our solar system.

Jason Everman: The Life Quixotic

The one-time Nirvana and Soundgarden guitarist went to war yet outlived the frontmen from both bands. He discusses a life in music and the military, and the lessons learnt from the original Renaissance Man, Cellini.

Return to K2

Avaunt meets one of the greatest living mountaineers, Jake Meyer, to discuss what motivated his return to K2, the infamous mountain that defeated him seven years ago.

Landscape For Giants

A collaboration between Inuit of Baffin Island and Canada Goose has elevated recycling into a dynamic tool for community building.

The White Limestone Workers of Minya

Egyptian photographer Nader Saadallah documents the eerie beauty of one of the most dangerous occupations in the world.

Tashkent Metro Stations

Stately pleasure domes: the palatial architecture of the underground stations of Tashkent are inspired by everything from Central Asian Emperor Tamburlaine the Great to the Soviet cosmonauts.
Browse by Category