The next version of Microsoft open source machine learning tools is coming to allow developers to create intelligent systems. Previously known as CNTK, Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit provides a set of tools to help developers build in-depth learning systems , more commonly known as deep learning , without requiring advanced knowledge.
This new version of Cognitive Toolkit provides a series of new features, including beta support for Keras, a popular high-level Python API for quickly encoding neural networks. TensorFlow and Theano, two other machine learning frameworks , already support Keras, and this update means that it will be possible for scientists to easily communicate their code between three different backends .
The toolbox also includes a support for compressing models to run on low-power devices, which facilitates the deployment of learning machines within devices for businesses.
A War of the Giants
One of the main advantages offered by Microsoft is its pedigree. The company uses its Cognitive Toolkit to create intelligent applications such as Bing video search. In addition, it is already used in Cortana, its digital assistant, and is part of a broader purpose of Microsoft to make the AI more accessible.
Obviously, this Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit solution is not isolated, since a lot of other programming frameworks supported by competing technology titans like Google has TensorFlow, or Amazon Web Services behind Apache MXNet, and Facebook behind Caffe2 are very enticing. All these tools are part of a broader trend to provide developers with the tools to take advantage of machine learning.