Nvidia CEO Speaks About A.I., the Nintendo Switch, and Donald Trump

“I believe the future is about having a whole bunch of A.I., not one A.I.” said Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang in a recent interview with VentureBeat. “We’re going to have our own personal A.I. for many fields of medicine, for many fields of manufacturing. We’ll have different A.I. for different parts of our business. We’ll have marketing A.I., supply chain A.I., forecasting A.I., human resources A.I. We’ll have a lot of different A.I. in the future. They’re going to be infused in to the software packages of today.”

Image Credit: Dean Takahashi
Image Credit: Dean Takahashi

Clearly Nvidia’s leader believes A.I. is the future, but he doesn’t necessarily think that science fiction trends are the things to watch, when it comes to design inspiration.

“I don’t really have to watch science fiction because I’m science fiction today. This is a company that’s close to the leading edge of what science fiction can be. Virtual reality, all the A.I. work we do, all the robotics work we do — we’re as close to realizing science fiction as it gets.”

Why then did Nvidia get involved with Nintendo in the development of its new console, the Switch? One major reason is that the company wasn’t in the business of making x86 CPUs, which is what the current generation of consoles use. “If a particular game console doesn’t require our special skills, what we can uniquely bring, then it’s a commodity business that may not be suited for us.”

“In the case of the Switch, it was such a ground-breaking design,” Huang said. “Performance matters because games were built on great performance, but form factor and energy efficiency matter incredibly because they want to build something that’s portable and transformable. The type of gameplay they want to enable is like nothing the world has so far. It’s a scenario where two great engineering teams, working with their relative teams, needed to hunker down. Several hundred engineering years went into building this new console. It’s the type of project that really inspires us, gets us excited. It’s a classic win-win.

Speaking of the future, Huang is hopeful that the institution of the United States should survive the election of President-elect Trump. “I guess my reaction is that we have to be mindful of bringing everybody along in this society,” he said. “I’m optimistic about the outcome, irrespective of how on balance I prefer a more liberal government. I have confidence in the resilience of institutions. We’ll find a way through and a find a way forward.”

If you want to read more about Nvidia’s work on the Nintendo Switch, check out our analysis of the Tegra processor.

Read the full interview over at VentureBeat.

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