Sony has followed in the path of Google, Facebook and Amazon, as it opens up access to its deep-learning software tools in an aim to attract artificial intelligence developers.
The company announced that it has made its Neural Network Libraries available in open source, giving software engineers and designers access the core libraries for free to develop the necessary deep learning programs.
Sony says the neural network design is a core development of any deep learning program and the shift to open source acts as a method to enable the development community to build on the core libraries’ programs.
The software in Sony’s core libraries is written in C++11 and the programming language runs in different environments and operates on Linux, Windows and other platforms. It is also embedded with Python programming language which provides access to easy prototyping and high efficiency development.
The network is designed to be compatible with Nvidia GPUs and according to Sony, its “core libraries can carry out neural network learning and execution at the highest available speeds, allowing for deep learning supported tech development with lower iteration time,” the company said in a statement.
Google was the first to begin delivering AI development tools, after the company made its TensorFlow serving platform available as open source in 2016.
Many companies also then looked to deploy their own software tools in order to make AI developers familiar with the same tools.
For example, Amazon open sourced its deep learning software in 2016, making its Deep Scalable Sparse Tensor Network Engine library available on GitHub. Facebook then partnered with Nvidia this year, to deliver their joint deep learning framework Caffe2 to then open source community.
There has been increase in the number of deep learning developers, most especially as the demand for AI and deep learning continues to surge in the market, giving Sony hope that the development of deep learning fields where machine learning has not been used will be effective.
The new initiative appears as part of Sony’s plan to explore AI environmental improvement, which was unveiled last year after it made an investment into Cogitai to focus on AI technology.