UPDATED 20:53 EDT / JUNE 24 2019


IBM moves through transformation by using AI to build enterprise data platform

During an interview in October, IBM Corp. Chief Executive Officer Ginni Rometty stated flatly that data will determine corporate winners and losers and her company was going through its own transformation centered around data.

Rometty stated that the key for any company seeking to become an incumbent disruptor is to make something of the data it has. This is IBM’s challenge, and it is already well down that path, according to one of its executives.

“The journey that we have been on is to build an enterprise data platform,” said Timothy Humphrey (pictured, right), vice president, Chief Data Office, at IBM. “When you talk about cross-functional, complex data coming together to enable models, that’s like the holy grail of transformation. We’re not finished; we’re well down the path, and we’ve learned a lot.”

Humphrey spoke with Dave Vellante (@dvellante), host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile livestreaming studio, during the IBM Chief Data Officer Summit in San Francisco. He was joined by Steven Eliuk (pictured, left), vice president of deep learning, Global Chief Data Office, at IBM, and they discussed the role of artificial intelligence in the cognitive enterprise and how data quality will be key for successful transformation by any company (see the full interview with transcript here). (* Disclosure below.)

Value of the Cognitive Enterprise

What IBM has learned is that AI will be a key ingredient in building a data platform that has value, part of what the company has labeled the Cognitive Enterprise. That takes robust computing power, and IBM is drawing on its partnership with Nvidia Corp. to leverage high-performance technology.

“IBM came to the market with a very interesting computer,” Eliuk said. “The POWER8 and POWER9 architecture has NVLink, which is a proprietary Nvidia interconnect directly to the CPU. So we can feed GPUs a lot quicker for certain types of tasks.”

With its lengthy history and size, IBM has been grappling with breaking down data silos after decades of acquisitions and product transitions. The expectation is that AI will play a central role in moving from a fragmented data landscape into one where real business value can be found.

“How do we standardize all aspects of data across the company?” Humphrey asked. “We are trying to use AI to be able to improve our data quality. We see transformation as being so important, and data is at the heart of that transformation.”

Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s coverage of the IBM Chief Data Officer Summit. (* Disclosure: TheCUBE is a paid media partner for the IBM Chief Data Officer Summit. Neither IBM, the sponsor for theCUBE’s event coverage, nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Photo: SiliconANGLE

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