So, I broke an AI system made by NVIDIA at SIGGRAPH 2017

NVIDIA displays Quadro P6000-powered AI at SIGGRAPH 2017, and I broke it.

1 minute & 59 seconds read time

SIGGRAPH 2017 - NVIDIA had a lot to show at SIGGRAPH 2017 this year, with Quadro P6000 systems that were editing 8K video in real-time, to multiple different demonstrations of artificial intelligence and deep learning systems.

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One of the AI demonstrations was an AI system called Isaac, who was a Pixar-style robot that you played dominoes against. NVIDIA had a sealed off room that you stepped into, with 3 x systems all powered with high-end Quadro P6000 graphics cards. One of the systems was powering a HTC Vive headset, while the other two were GPU grunt for the AI system, Isaac.

In the VR world, you stand in a class room, across the table from Isaac. Isaac is there to play dominoes against, with NVIDIA building their AI system to detect your moves in the game, and then countering them. If you placed a domino down and it had a single dot, Isaac would respond by working out what he's seeing (a domino with a single dot) and then reaching for one of his dominoes, and placing it next to yours - prompting you for your next move.

Well, the first thing I did was grab one of my dominoes and throw it at Isaac's face - but he didn't respond. The next thing I tried to do was block Isaac's view, so I placed the two hands that I have in the game world, in front of his eyes - but it didn't do anything. He still reacted to my move, and placed his domino.

Alright. So, I went a little further and placed by domino in a standing position, vertically - to see if he would react to that. Isaac did, and placed a domino to counter the one I had placed, but his was laying down. This wasn't good enough for me, I wanted to see if I could get a reaction out of an AI system and push it to its limits. So I placed my hands in front of the domino, cupping my hands around it to see if I could fully block Isacc's vision of the dominoes.

The NVIDIA staff in the room started laughing, because Isaac couldn't work out what to do, and their algorithm was going nuts to try and react to a situation it hadn't been placed in before. It was after a few seconds of Isaac freaking out in code, that NVIDIA said to me that I had "broken their AI system", with laughter bursting through the room.

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Isaac would view you through a single Logitech webcam, picking up the skeletal movement of your body in the room and detecting how many humans were in its field of view - kinda scary, isn't it?

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Here's the code that NVIDIA had running in the background, powering Isaac.

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The three systems in question, each powered with a combination of Quadro P6000 and TITAN X graphics cards.

Anthony joined the TweakTown team in 2010 and has since reviewed 100s of graphics cards. Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering and has recently taken a keen interest in artificial intelligence (AI) hardware.

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