RBC develops AI private cloud platform with Red Hat & NVIDIA
In a recent announcement made by the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) and its artificial intelligence (AI) research institute - Borealis AI - the two have partnered with Red Hat and NVIDIA to develop a new artificial intelligence (AI) computing platform.
“In today’s ever changing marketplace, we must always be at the forefront of innovation for our clients. We are proud to have delivered a unique AI Private Cloud capability in-house, leveraging our strong collaboration with Red Hat and NVIDIA. This cloud offers GPU acceleration and containerized platform benefits, and we are well positioned to provide the best experience possible for our customers going forward,” commented Mike Tardif, Senior Vice President, Tech Infrastructure, Royal Bank of Canada.
The new AI platform has been designed by the organisations to transform the customer banking experience, and maintain its adoption of rapid technological changes and evolving customer expectations.
While there has been significant progress when it comes to the efficiency and accuracy of AI models, the progress does come with computational complexities. As a result RBC and Borealis AI aims to build an in-house AI infrastructure to allow transformative intelligent applications to be brought to market faster and deliver an enhanced experience.
Red Hat OpenShift and NVIDIA’s DGX AI computing systems will power the private system to deliver intelligent software applications and boost operational efficiency by having the ability to run thousands of simulations and analyse millions of data points in a fraction of the time compared to before.
“It is always humbling to see Red Hat technologies in action, and we are honored to see how it contributed to the leading AI computing platform that RBC now has. Together with NVIDIA, OpenShift is helping to power the future of not just positive customer experience and overall operational excellence, but is enabling the bank to embark on research projects that have the potential to make a lasting impact on the world,” commented Chris Wright, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Red Hat.
The flexible and highly reliable self-service infrastructure has already reported improved trading execution and insights, as well as reduced client calls and resulted in faster delivery of new applications.
“Before AI can enable transformative business opportunities, it must first be integrated as a strategic IT platform. RBC is leading the way in accelerating AI development through high-performance infrastructure from NVIDIA and Red Hat. By combining innovative technology with their expert knowledge in financial services, the RBC team has created one of the most sophisticated and dynamic AI development infrastructures in Canada,” added Charlie Boyle, Vice President and General Manager, DGX Systems, NVIDIA.
“Modern AI cannot exist without access to high performance computing. This collaboration means that we can conduct research at scale, and deploy machine learning applications in production with improved efficiency and speed to market,” concluded Foteini Agrafioti, Chief Science Officer, RBC and head of Borealis AI.
Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.