Microsoft invested in self-driving cars developer Cruise
Microsoft IT Corporation not only develops its own innovative technologies, but also actively invests in promising projects of other companies. The other day, the Internet giant financed a $2 billion round of development of self-driving cars. Cruise is a division of U.S. auto concern General Motors. It should be noted that this deal was one of the first for Microsoft in the segment of creating autonomous vehicles.
As a result of the round, Cruise’s value grew to $30 billion. In addition to the corporation of Bill Gates, investors in the developer were Honda Concern, which is also part of a strategic partnership with Microsoft. It is known that for the creation of self-driving cars Cruise will use the cloud platform Azure, which belongs to Honda.
Cooperation with this corporation is extremely beneficial for Cruise. Thanks to the use of Azure, there is no need to develop their own solution. In turn, Microsoft takes over the testing of various systems that use machine learning technologies and affect the field of robotics.
Cruise was created in 2013 in San Francisco, and three years later it was acquired by General Motors, the transaction amounted to $1 billion. In 2020, the developer presented its first electric car, which does not require the driver to physically intervene in the driving process. Microsoft has been developing artificial intelligence and machine learning for a long time. Last year, the corporation introduced Lobe, an application that makes it possible to train machine learning models. The peculiarity of the platform is that there is no need to write additional code. The service is at the initial stage of development, and so far works only with images. However, in the near future, the authors of Lobe promise to introduce other classifications, such as object recognition or voice information.
The application is available for Windows and Mac users. To use it, you need to download the prepared image or take a photo of it with the device camera. In this case, the pictures need to be numbered, and thus get a finished model. Thanks to the open source code, you can add your own parameters, improving the learning process and image recognition.
Ready-made projects related to Lobe can be found on GitHub, there are iOS and Android versions, as well as an application in Python.
According to Microsoft, the more users work with Lobe, the faster machine learning technology will improve. The app will also show a wider audience the possibility of using such products and their importance to progress. Already, Lobe has created apps that help recognize noxious plants and insects, identify wasp hives, and more.