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AWS & Microsoft make machine learning easy with open source Gluon

The interface is designed to be used by developers of all skills.

By James Nunns

Gluon: “An elementary particle that acts as the exchange particle for the strong force between quarks,” and now a deep learning interface that’s been created by AWS and Microsoft.

Designed to allow developers to build and run machine learning models for apps and services, one of its key selling points is that it’s designed to be used by developers of all abilities.

The interface is provided in the form of a Python API and can be used to build neural networks under the Apache 2.0 license and it works with Apache MXNet and will also support Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit in an upcoming release.

Gluon“The potential of machine learning can only be realized if it is accessible to all developers. Today’s reality is that building and training machine learning models requires a great deal of heavy lifting and specialized expertise,” said Swami Sivasubramanian, VP of Amazon AI. “

We created the Gluon interface so building neural networks and training models can be as easy as building an app. We look forward to our collaboration with Microsoft on continuing to evolve the Gluon interface for developers interested in making machine learning easier to use.”

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Offering both imperative programming and symbolic programming, it does lack support for Facebook’s Caffe2 and Google’s TensorFlow, however, because AWS and Microsoft have published Gluon’s reference specification, other deep learning engines can be integrated with the interface. This can be found on GitHub here.

“We believe it is important for the industry to work together and pool resources to build technology that benefits the broader community,” said Eric Boyd, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft AI and Research.

“This is why Microsoft has collaborated with AWS to create the Gluon interface and enable an open AI ecosystem where developers have freedom of choice. Machine learning has the ability to transform the way we work, interact and communicate. To make this happen we need to put the right tools in the right hands, and the Gluon interface is a step in this direction.”

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