Breaking Barriers and Expanding Horizons, VMware Opens the Doors to the Transformative Power of Generative AI Across Industries.
In an epoch-defining move at VMware Explore 2023, VMware, Inc. has taken the world of artificial intelligence by storm, introducing an array of groundbreaking Private AI offerings. These cutting-edge solutions are poised to propel enterprise adoption of generative artificial intelligence and unlock the true potential of trusted data.
Private AI emerges as a transformative architectural approach that melds the business benefits of AI with an organisation’s imperative for privacy and compliance. As the world enters the age of AI-driven innovation, VMware’s strategic unveiling aims to bridge the gap between technological advancement and the practical needs of enterprises.
Amid this monumental announcement, VMware introduces two pivotal components poised to redefine the AI landscape:
1. VMware Private AI Foundation with NVIDIA
VMware is ushering in a new era for enterprises that run VMware’s cloud infrastructure by forging an extended partnership with NVIDIA. The Private AI Foundation with NVIDIA is a comprehensive set of integrated AI tools designed to enable enterprises to deploy proven models cost-effectively trained on their private data. These models can be deployed across various environments, including data centers, leading public clouds, and edge computing setups.
This strategic collaboration combines VMware’s Private AI architecture, built on VMware Cloud Foundation, with NVIDIA AI Enterprise software and accelerated computing capabilities. This offering paves the way for enterprises to customise models and deploy generative AI applications, ranging from intelligent chatbots to advanced search and summarisation tools. The major OEMs, including Dell Technologies, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), and Lenovo, will support the VMware Private AI Foundation with NVIDIA. Commenting on the anticipated use case of Private AI being built into the foundational IT systems of the City of Las Vegas, Michael Sherwood, chief innovation and technology officer, City of Las Vegas said, “As we continue transforming Las Vegas into a world-class city of the future, we are leveraging generative AI to further our innovation in public safety, citizen engagement, and transportation”. Further commenting, Sherwood elaborated, “VMware is a critical component of our multi-cloud infrastructure upon which these generative AI initiatives are built. With growing demands and limited resources, we rely heavily on the real-time data analytics and scalable solutions VMware provides to improve outcomes that positively impact residents and visitors.”
2. VMware Private AI Reference Architecture for Open Source
To empower customers in achieving their AI aspirations, VMware has introduced the Private AI Reference Architecture for Open Source. This dynamic architecture harnesses the power of best-in-class open-source software (OSS) technologies to enable the construction and deployment of OSS models on top of VMware Cloud Foundation.
Collaborations with key players across the AI landscape further enrich this offering:
- Anyscale: Integrating the open-source Ray unified compute framework into Cloud environments enhances scalability for AI and Python workloads, enabling enterprises to harness their current compute setups for ML workloads efficiently.
“VMware and its customers are some of the most innovative companies created there, and they all want to know how they can infuse AI into their products,” said Robert Nishihara, co-founder and CEO, Anyscale, developer of the widely adopted open-source Python framework Ray machine learning project. “But given the rapid growth of this nascent field, companies are struggling to stay at the forefront of AI while scaling, productising, and iterating quickly. Because Ray can run anywhere – on any cloud provider, on-premises, on your laptop – and VMware’s customers run everywhere, it’s a natural collaboration to make it easier for companies to accelerate their business using generative AI.”
- Domino Data Lab: VMware, Domino Data Lab, and NVIDIA have created a unified platform tailored for AI/ML deployments in the financial services industry, delivering analytics, data science, and infrastructure solutions optimised for this sector’s unique needs.
- Global Systems Integrators: Collaborations with leading GSIs, including Wipro and HCL, enable the delivery of turnkey Private AI solutions that combine VMware Cloud with AI partner ecosystem solutions, facilitating seamless implementation.
- Hugging Face: VMware’s collaboration with Hugging Face culminates in the launching of a comprehensive commercial code assistant solution built for enterprises. SafeCoder leverages VMware infrastructure and sets the stage for rapid deployment and operation.
A Visionary Transformation: Private AI at Work
The crux of VMware’s Private AI strategy is bridging the divide between compute capacity, AI models, and enterprise data creation, processing, and consumption. Whether residing within a public cloud, an enterprise data center, or at the cutting-edge edge, Private AI promises to empower businesses with untold potential.
With these pioneering offerings, VMware fosters an environment where enterprises can seamlessly combine the much-needed flexibility and control to usher in a new era of AI-enabled applications. These transformative tools can significantly boost workforce productivity, spark transformation across vital business functions, and wield a substantial economic impact. Notably, a McKinsey report suggests that generative AI could contribute up to a staggering $4.4 trillion annually to the global economy.
The Backbone: A Multi-Cloud Environment
At the core of this revolution lies the multi-cloud environment, the cornerstone for this new breed of AI-powered applications. VMware’s multi-cloud approach paves the way for developing AI models that can be meticulously tailored to an enterprise’s private data by providing unparalleled choice and flexibility. All this while maintaining stringent security and resiliency standards across any environment.
As Raghu Raghuram, CEO of VMware, emphasises, “The remarkable potential of generative AI cannot be unlocked unless enterprises can maintain the privacy of their data and minimise IP risk while training, customising, and serving their AI models. With VMware Private AI, we empower our customers to tap into their trusted data so they can build and run AI models quickly and more securely in their multi-cloud environment.”
A Resounding Solution: Private AI by VMware
The challenges of generative AI are manifold, ranging from data exposure risks tied to public AI models to the resource-intensive nature of a “do-it-yourself” model. Addressing these challenges head-on, VMware AI Labs has meticulously crafted Private AI to usher in a future where AI is democratised across the enterprise.
Chris Wolf, Vice President of VMware AI Labs, notes, “AI has traditionally been built and designed by data scientists, for data scientists. With the introduction of these new VMware Private AI offerings, VMware is making the future of AI serve everyone in the enterprise by bringing the choice of compute and AI models closer to the data. Our Private AI approach benefits enterprise use cases ranging from software development and marketing content generation to customer service tasks and pulling insights from legal documents.”
In a world on the brink of AI-driven transformation, VMware’s Private AI initiatives serve as a beacon of innovation, bridging the gap between aspiration and practicality and unlocking a realm of possibilities for enterprises worldwide.
Intelligent Assist: Elevating Multi-Cloud Offerings with Generative AI
VMware’s visionary strides extend further with the introduction of Intelligent Assist, a family of generative AI-based solutions. These solutions, trained on its proprietary data, offer seamless extensions to VMware Cross-Cloud Services, simplifying and automating various facets of enterprise IT in a multi-cloud environment.
“Lexmark as an imaging and IoT company that embraces multi-cloud, one of our most significant generative AI challenges has been ensuring data accuracy, privacy, and security when working with large language models,” said Vishal Gupta, chief information and technology officer of Lexmark. “We require Lexmark’s team of data scientists to have the infrastructure to innovate flexibly while protecting our proprietary data. Working with VMware means we are confident that our AI initiatives can scale seamlessly and with trust, and our talent can, therefore, entirely focus on delivering business impact and solving customer problems.”
The Intelligent Assist products include:
- Tanzu with Intelligent Assist (Tech Preview): Streamlining multi-cloud visibility and configuration, this solution empowers users to request and refine changes to their enterprise’s cloud infrastructure effortlessly.
- Workspace ONE with Intelligent Assist (Tech Preview): Enhancing script-writing efficiency, this feature allows users to craft high-quality scripts using natural language prompts.
- NSX+ with Intelligent Assist (Tech Preview): Catering to security analysts, this tool expedites threat assessment and remediation, ensuring swift and precise response to security findings.
As VMware Explore 2023 unfolds, these ground-breaking announcements redefine the boundaries of AI adoption, making the promise of generative AI accessible to enterprises across diverse industries. With a strong focus on privacy, compliance, and innovation, VMware is forging a path toward a future powered by the transformative potential of AI.
Dataquest representative was invited to VMware Explore 2023 and traveled to Las Vegas to attend it.