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Former NASA chief Daniel Goldin unveils KnuEdge

KnuEdge, a company created by the former head of NASA Daniel Goldin, has just revealed that it has already raised $100 million in funding to build a “neural chip” to improve the efficiency of data centres.

Goldin started the company a decade ago in San Diego, California and until now the nature of its business and the way in which it raised its capital were quite secret. Now KnuEdge has revealed that it has already managed to generate $20 million in revenue from companies in the aerospace, banking, healthcare, hospitality and insurance industries. The company's end goal is to design a computer chip that functions in a similar way to how the human brain works.

Over the past 10 years, Goldin has been patiently raising capital for his business and has only now stepped out of the shadows to raise awareness for two other pieces of KnuEdge's business. The first is KnuVerse which is a military-grade voice recognition and authentication technology that makes it possible for voice interfaces to power the next-generation of computing.

What set's the company's technology apart from its competitors like Siri, Cortana and Google Now is that it has developed patented authentication techniques that use voice (even in very noisy environments) as one of the most secure forms of biometrics. KnuVerse's technology has many potential applications in banking, entertainment and the hospitality industry. The company even claims that its proprietary technology can authenticate to computers apps and IoT devices with just a few words in any language.

KnuEdge also announced its first chip called KnuPath that will feature LambdaFabric computing. The chip is built using an older manufacturing technology but will ship with 256 cores. By using LambdaFabric technology, the cores on each chip can easily be connected to one another. Overall a total of 512,000 devices could potentially be connected with a latency of only 400 nanoseconds. Programmers will also have the option to program each core with a different algorithm using C++.

The principal analyst at Tirias Research, Paul Teich explained KnuEdge's decision to bring its technology out of hiding: “KnuEdge is emerging out of stealth mode to aim its new Voice and Machine Learning technologies at key challenges in IoT, cloud based machine learning and pattern recognition. Dan Goldin used his experience in transforming technology to charter KnuEdge with a bold idea, with the patience of longer development timelines and away from typical startup hype and practices. The result is a new and cutting-edge path for neural computing acceleration. There is also a refreshing surprise element to KnuEdge announcing a relevant new architecture that is ready to ship… not just a concept or early prototype.”

It will be interesting to see how programmers and device manufacturers put KnuEdge's chips to use and whether KnuVerse's technology is able to deliver on its promises.

Image Credit: Andrii Myronov / Shutterstock

Anthony Spadafora
After living and working in South Korea for seven years, Anthony now resides in Houston, Texas where he writes about a variety of technology topics for ITProPortal.