Intel Neural Compute Stick 2 Improves AI Capabilities for Makers

Doris Richards
November 16, 2018

No word yet on when the Intel Neural Compute Stick 2 will be available to local developers at this stage.

Intel today unveiled an upgraded Neural Compute Stick that it claims will dramatically simplify the roll-out of neural network inference applications in drones, IoT, and edge devices.

Built upon the foundation left by the Movidius Neural Compute Stick (MNCS), Intel today has announced the new Neural Compute Stick 2 (NCS2) which is created to help developers out there accelerate the development of their AI-related applications.

If you are interested in delving into the world of computer vision and image recognition then the new Neural Compute Stick from Intel is something you should be aware of. "We're excited to see what the community creates next with the strong enhancement to compute power enabled with the new Intel Neural Compute Stick 2", said Naveen Rao, Intel corporate vice president and general manager of the AI Products Group. Researchers and developers can use it to prototype Internet of Things (IoT) devices as well as convert and deploy computer vision models to devices natively as it is powered by Intel's OpenVINO toolkit.

Added to this is the ability to do all this in the same kind of form factor that one expects from a USB thumb drive. The NCS 2 packs advanced Myriad X VPU that will make it easier for developers to speed up the artificial intelligence applications.

Intel says the NCS2 is 8x faster than the first generation NCS, which should allow customers to build systems that feature faster inference processes, or ones that incorporate more data points. Additionally, thanks to the Intel AI: In Production ecosystem, developers can now port their Intel NCS 2 prototypes to other form factors and productize their designs. Intel acquired Movidius, a computer vision processing startup, in 2016. The only requirements are that their system is running a Linux-based OS and that it has a USB 3.0 port to plug in the NCS2.

The first-generation Intel NCS, launched in July 2017, has fueled a community of tens of thousands of developers, has been featured in more than 700 developer videos and has been utilized in dozens of research papers.

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