MILWAUKEE, Wi. (Spectrum News) -- Milwaukee School of Engineering is celebrating its grand opening of the Dwight and Dian Diercks Computational Science Hall. It features an artificial intelligence super computer and an undergraduate degree in computer science.
The new addition brings a unique computer science program to the school where students get hands-on training with the super computer, preparing them to meet the demands of one of the fastest growing areas in industry; A.I.
MSOE Alumni and regent Dwight Diercks donated $34 million dollars to make it possible.
Diercks is highly regarded in the tech world for his role as Vice President of Software Engineering at the Silicon Valley company, Nvidia.
"MSOE regents, distinguished guests, faculty and staff, are you ready? asked Diercks as the crowd cheered him on to power on the Artificial Intelligence super computer.
"Hello, I'm Rosie MSOE's GPU powered Super Computer. My name was inspired by women who were the first modern computer coders and programmers in the US. Referred to AS Rosies, they programmed computers before the invention of programming languages."
"The first super computer was the ENIAC back in the 40's that was built by the government that was built to solve ballistic calculations for World War II. And, this computer had to be programmed, so the people that were doing all the mathematical computations of the day were these human computers, all of them female," explained Diercks.
Back then super computers ran with many human computers, such as Rosies, that would all crunch numbers at the same time.
That's essentially what's happening today, but instead of human computers, it's hundreds of thousands separate digital computers, or cores, crunching numbers in seconds.
"Here it's registering two and a half thousand photos a second, identifying what flower they are almost instantaneously," said Junior MSOE Computer Engineering and Computer Science student David Gonzalez.
MSOE students like Gonzalez will be programming Rosie through what is known as deep neural-networking.
"Honestly it's the reason I'm coming to this school. It's a huge deal. We can do so many more projects, like tests and studies at a significantly higher speed which is awesome, but it's also things I wouldn't have access to even in the professional world, years into my career, I would never have access to working directly with a super computer," explained Gonzalez.
All MSOE students will be able to access the A.I. super computer and it will offer a wide array of training including Med-tech, financial analytics, cyber security, and Ag-Tech.