Yann LeCun, who started designing neural networks at AT&T Bell Labs in 1988, is optimistic about the future of artificial intelligence. "In my opinion, the future of AI is self-supervised learning," said LeCun, who works for Facebook, during a keynote address at the recent International Solid-State Circuits Conference in San Francisco.
Intel purchased Ineda Systems of Hyderabad, India, a fabless semiconductor company; financial terms weren't revealed. The cash transaction is characterized as an "acquihire" deal, where Intel was chiefly interested in bringing on the startup's 100 or so system-on-a-chip design engineers, who can help the chipmaker develop graphics processing units for applications in artificial intelligence, autonomous driving and the internet of things.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. has reported that its use of a defective photoresist material, which led to the scrapping of silicon wafers in production, will lower its first-quarter revenue by about $550 million. The foundry expects to make up the production losses during the second quarter after rescheduling deliveries with its customers.
MediaTek posted January consolidated revenue of $527.1 million, a 24.1% decline from December and its lowest level in nearly one year. The chip design company previously forecast that January revenue would be down 12% to 20%.
University of Glasgow researchers used layers of graphene and polyurethane to create a flexible supercapacitor that can harness solar power. This device can deliver a power output of 2.5 volts, compared with 1 volt or less from previous supercapacitors, making it suitable for advanced portable and wearable electronics, according to the team.
Researchers in Germany are using scandium aluminum nitride, a piezoelectric semiconductor material with high dielectric strength, as an alternative to silicon for new applications in microelectronics. The research team is growing lattice-matched ScAlN on a layer of gallium nitride, creating heterostructures that can process transistors with the ability to carry high currents, the team reports.
The open-source RISC-V instruction set architecture is gaining in popularity among designers of semiconductors for military/aerospace applications, this analysis notes. "RISC-V is being received with open arms by the military and aerospace sectors," says Tim Morin of Microchip Technology.
Sales of PC gaming laptops will be robust later this year, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said. More than 40 gaming laptops based upon the chip company's GeForce RTX 2060 graphics processing unit with the Turing architecture will be launched during 2019, he said.
China is offering to increase its imports of US semiconductors by $200 billion over six years, trying to break the deadlock on the trade talks between China and the US, this analysis notes. Chinese negotiators are also reportedly offering to end a vehicle-procurement policy that gave consumers subsidies to buy new-energy, small-engine vehicles made in China.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. is about to commence commercial production of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855, a system-on-a-chip device for high-end Android smartphones, fabricated with the foundry's 7-nanometer process. Meanwhile, TSMC reported January revenue of $2.53 billion, down 13.1% from December and off by 2.1% from a year earlier.