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Aurora Accelerates Development of the Aurora Driver with AWS

Aurora, AWS | December 02, 2021

Aurora Accelerates Development of the Aurora Driver with AWS
 Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS), an Amazon.com, Inc. company announced that Aurora a leader in self-driving vehicle technology, has selected AWS as its preferred cloud provider for machine learning training and cloud-based simulation workloads. Aurora uses AWS’s proven infrastructure and unparalleled portfolio of capabilities to safely accelerate the development of the Aurora Driver, its scalable self-driving vehicle technology. The Aurora Driver consists of sensors that perceive the world, software that plans a safe path through it, and a computer that powers and integrates Aurora’s hardware and software with any vehicle platform. For its machine learning training and cloud-based simulation workloads, Aurora is all-in on AWS, and it uses the cloud to process trillions of data points each day. Now, the company is scaling its training workloads in the cloud to complete up to 12 million physics-based driving simulations per day by the end of the year, building on the petabytes of data it collects during real-world road tests.

Autonomous driving is an immensely complex technological challenge that relies heavily on cloud computing to enable breakthroughs in perception, embedded computing, machine learning, motion planning, decision making, and advanced sensor technologies. With AWS’s capabilities in high-performance computing, machine learning, storage, and security, Aurora optimizes and scales its virtual testing efforts to expand the capabilities of the Aurora Driver safely and quickly.

Aurora’s advanced machine learning and simulation at scale are foundational to developing our technology safely and quickly, and AWS delivers the high performance we need to maintain our progress. With its virtually unlimited scale, AWS supports millions of virtual tests to validate the capabilities of the Aurora Driver so that it can safely navigate the countless edge cases of real-world driving.”

 Chris Urmson, CEO of Aurora

Aurora’s AWS-powered Virtual Testing Suite is a unique accelerator for the development of the Aurora Driver. Aurora can use data from just one testing situation it observes in the real world to inspire hundreds of permutations in the Virtual Testing Suite. That virtual testing helps train the Aurora Driver to more quickly and safely navigate complex situations, such as road construction, jaywalkers, and unprotected left-hand turns. For example, before the Aurora Driver ever attempted an unprotected left-hand turn on a physical road, it completed nearly 2.3 million turns in simulation—estimated to be roughly equal to 20,000 hours of real-world driving practice. Aurora has been running simulations at scale on AWS since 2019, and plans to triple the volume of simulations it runs on AWS to more than 12 million per day by the end of 2021.

The offline components of the Aurora Driver software stack all run on AWS, including the Virtual Testing Suite, high-definition road maps (the Aurora “Atlas”), machine learning models, and software development tools. For example, Aurora uses Amazon SageMaker (an AWS service that helps developers and data scientists build, train, and deploy machine learning models quickly) to create, run, and continuously refine the machine learning models that enable its driving simulations. With that service, Aurora accesses Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instance types like P4d, which deliver the highest performance for machine learning training in the cloud.

Before developing simulations, Aurora uses AWS to securely store and process the petabytes of data it logs during real-world testing, and then train its machine learning models on that data. The pre-processing workloads run on Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) and Amazon EMR, AWS’s service for processing vast amounts of data in the cloud using open-source tools. Aurora’s machine learning training workloads then rely on AWS-optimized deep learning frameworks, such as TensorFlow and PyTorch. Finally, Aurora orchestrates and auto-scales its simulation workflows over hundreds of thousands of concurrent vCPUs and thousands of concurrent GPUs with Amazon EKS and Amazon EC2, which provides accelerated computing instance types like G4dn.

“AWS’s highly scalable compute, machine learning, and analytics services are helping Aurora move self-driving vehicle technology forward, toward broad real-world use,” said Swami Sivasubramanian, Vice President of Machine Learning at Amazon Web Services, Inc. “Our reliable infrastructure and comprehensive set of cloud services, including industry-leading machine learning services like Amazon SageMaker, provide the ideal foundation for Aurora to gain insights from the trillions of data points it generates every day to continuously enhance its technology. We are proud to support the acceleration of autonomous vehicle innovation, and look forward to the improved safety and efficiency the transformation of trucking, delivery, and mobility will allow.”

About Amazon Web Services
For over 15 years, Amazon Web Services has been the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud offering. AWS has been continually expanding its services to support virtually any cloud workload, and it now has more than 200 fully featured services for compute, storage, databases, networking, analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), mobile, security, hybrid, virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR), media, and application development, deployment, and management from 81 Availability Zones within 25 geographic regions, with announced plans for 27 more Availability Zones and nine more AWS Regions in Australia, Canada, India, Indonesia, Israel, New Zealand, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates. Millions of customers—including the fastest-growing startups, largest enterprises, and leading government agencies—trust AWS to power their infrastructure, become more agile, and lower costs. 

About Amazon
Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Amazon strives to be Earth’s Most Customer-Centric Company, Earth’s Best Employer, and Earth’s Safest Place to Work. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Career Choice, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, Alexa, Just Walk Out technology, Amazon Studios, and The Climate Pledge are some of the things pioneered by Amazon. 

About Aurora
Founded in 2017 by experts in the self-driving industry, Aurora is on a mission to deliver the benefits of self-driving technology safely, quickly, and broadly. To move both people and goods, the company is building the Aurora Driver, a platform that brings together software, hardware and data services to autonomously operate passenger vehicles, light commercial vehicles, and heavy-duty trucks. Aurora is backed by Sequoia Capital, Baillie Gifford, funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price Associates, among others, and is partnered with industry leaders including Toyota, Uber, Volvo, and PACCAR. Aurora tests its vehicles in the Bay Area, Pittsburgh, and Dallas. The company has offices in those areas as well as in Bozeman, MT; Seattle, WA; Louisville, CO; and Wixom, MI. 

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Intelsat Collaborates With Microsoft to Demonstrate Private Cellular Network Using Intelsat’s Global Satellite and Ground Network

Intelsat | February 28, 2022

Intelsat, operator of one of the world’s largest and most advanced integrated satellite and terrestrial networks, today announced the successful demonstration of a first of its kind private cellular network with Microsoft Azure Private Multi-Access Edge Compute and FlexEnterprise, Intelsat’s satellite-based global connectivity service. Held at Intelsat’s office in McLean, VA, the demonstration successfully establishes a reference architecture for deploying secure, high-performance private LTE and 5G networks and other cloud services over satellite networks to enterprise locations virtually anywhere globally, including those in remote and austere environments. The demonstration creates a private LTE service using Azure Private 5G Core deployed on an Azure Stack Edge device. Connectivity to the internet and Azure services is enabled by Intelsat’s FlexEnterprise. Via the private cellular network, users can access local enterprise resources via SIM-authenticated connections to the Azure Stack Edge and access remote resources through the FlexEnterprise connection, the IntelsatOne global network and Azure. Additionally, the LTE network powers a Wi-Fi access point and IoT applications. “As enterprises look to private cellular networks to improve the reach, security, and quality-of-service over Wi-Fi-only local networks, the ability to support deployments at any site is crucial to creating a fully connected organization. The applications demonstrated here with Microsoft highlight the increased automation and standardization of enterprise data processing services that globally-available private cellular networks will enable. Support for high-bandwidth, low-latency networks is central to Intelsat’s vision of an end-to-end ecosystem for a global software-defined 5G network.” Jean-Philippe Gillet, SVP Global Sales Media & Networks, Intelsat “At Microsoft, we are committed to enabling an ecosystem of satellite operators through collaborations such as this one with Intelsat. As the world continues to move to 5G, Microsoft’s Azure Orbital platform, together with our Azure hyper-scale computing platform, allows operators to deploy and maintain faster, easier, and more cost-effective solutions anytime and anywhere,” said Tom Keane, corporate vice president, Mission Engineering. Mobile Experts Inc. expects the global private LTE and 5G equipment and services market to grow at around 20% CAGR to about $10 billion in 2025. Intelsat is one of the world’s most trusted integrated space and ground satellite networks with a 50-year record of delivering seamless and secure coverage across 200+ countries. We are building a unified global 5G network that will support virtually any access technology, enabling the next generation of global mobility, IoT, and 5G services. Merging software-defined technology and multiple networks and orbits, we bring the world a single, more powerful way to connect easily. About Intelsat As the foundational architects of satellite technology, Intelsat operates the world’s most trusted satellite telecom network. We apply our unparalleled expertise and global scale to connect people, businesses, and communities, no matter how difficult the challenge. Intelsat is building the future of global communications with the world’s first hybrid, multi-orbit, software-defined 5G network designed for simple, seamless, and secure coverage precisely when and where our customers most need it.

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Kontrol Technologies Enters Quebec Demand Response Energy Market

Kontrol Technologies Corp. | December 23, 2021

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Spectrio Launches All-New Spectrio Cloud Content Management Software

Spectrio | June 14, 2022

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Accenture Announces Intent to Acquire AFD.TECH to Bolster its Cloud First Network Capabilities

Accenture | December 16, 2021

Accenture has announced its intent to acquire AFD.TECH, an independent network services company specializing in network engineering, operations and business services. Financial terms of the transaction are not being disclosed. This acquisition would add more than 1,600 highly skilled professionals to Accenture globally, along with multidisciplinary capabilities across engineering, design, deployment, and operation of next generation networks, such as 5G and fiber. “The combination of latest technologies such as 5G, cloud and next generation IoT is transforming the way businesses are operating across all the industries by creating opportunities for innovative services and new sources of growth. To succeed in their digital transformation and take advantage of its full potential, companies must act now to adopt the right strategy and build new business solutions enabled by network investments. This acquisition would give us a significant footprint in advanced mobile and enterprise networks.” Olivier Girard, market unit lead for Accenture in France & Benelux The newly acquired expertise when combined with Accenture’s Cloud First capabilities would provide a broad spectrum of proven practices, operational excellence and human ingenuity to help clients drive comprehensive transformation across their disparate networks. Karthik Narain, global lead, Accenture Cloud First, said: “Most networks were not built for today’s highly distributed world of cloud, edge devices and remote work. Increasingly, companies will need to invest in modern networks that seamlessly connect across the dynamic capabilities of the cloud continuum—from public through edge and everything in between. AFD.TECH’s network operations and IT capabilities, as well as its deep industry knowledge, would complement Accenture’s cloud, edge computing, security, and network capabilities to help clients shape, build and operate cloud-first networks.” Founded in 1998, AFD.TECH serves leading telecom brands and clients across various other industries, including energy, industrial, infrastructure and life sciences sectors. The company is based in France with additional offices in Belgium and Morocco. “Combining our strengths with Accenture would allow us to leverage the potential offered by the latest technologies and to allow an even-broader client base, both existing and future, to grasp the full potential of the range of new services that will be generated by the deep transformation across nearly every industry and market in the next five years. The opportunity to join Accenture would allow us to scale capabilities and enable tremendous opportunity for our clients, our company and our people. Together, we would help clients adapt their operating model, expand the skills of their people and drive innovation to unlock the full potential of 5G.” said Jérôme Picard, co-founder and CEO of AFD.TECH. The acquisition of AFD.TECH would strengthen Accenture’s network operations capabilities in Europe and follows Accenture’s acquisition of Arca last November and of umlaut in October 2021. The acquisition requires prior consultation with the relevant works councils and would be subject to customary closing conditions. About Accenture Accenture is a global professional services company with leading capabilities in digital, cloud and security. Combining unmatched experience and specialized skills across more than 40 industries, we offer Strategy and Consulting, Interactive, Technology and Operations services—all powered by the world’s largest network of Advanced Technology and Intelligent Operations centers. Our 624,000 people deliver on the promise of technology and human ingenuity every day, serving clients in more than 120 countries. We embrace the power of change to create value and shared success for our clients, people, shareholders, partners and communities.

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