NVIDIA Launches Its AI Workbench, Aims to Make ML and Gen AI Accessible to All

Available as a free download for Windows, macOS, and Ubuntu Linux, NVIDIA AI Workbench promises an easy introduction to ML and gen AI.

NVIDIA has announced general availability of its AI Workbench, designed to offer a zero-cost quick-start for machine learning and generative artificial intelligence (gen AI) projects on Microsoft Windows, Apple macOS, and Canonical's Ubuntu Linux — regardless, the company claims, of the user's skill level.

"NVIDIA AI Workbench […] features automation that removes roadblocks for novice developers and makes experts more productive," NVIDIA's André Franklin and Charu Chaubal claim of the software in a joint announcement. "Developers can experience a fast and reliable GPU environment setup and the freedom to work, manage, and collaborate across heterogeneous platforms regardless of skill level.

NVIDIA is taking its AI Workbench out of beta, offering a free platform for machine learning and gen AI development. (📹: NVIDIA)

Previously available in beta form, NVIDIA AI Workbench aims to deliver a smoother experience for those looking to work on machine learning and artificial intelligence systems on everything from laptops to high-performance compute clusters. On installation, it sets up a container with the drivers, CUDA support, and firmware required for a given graphics card; projects can then be migrated to other platforms, including cloud platforms.

The software also includes built-in workflow handling, including source file versioning and dependency tracking, in an effort to ease newcomers into proper project management. To prove its capabilities, NVIDIA has made a set of project examples available: a retrieval augmented generation (RAG) system that lets you "chat with your documents"; customization of the popular Llama-2 and Mistral-7B large language models (LLMs); and the Stable Diffusion XL image generation model running either locally on an NVIDIA RTX GPU-based system or in the cloud.

Since its release in beta NVIDIA AI Workbench has added support for Microsoft's Visual Studio Code integrated development environment (IDE), the ability to select custom container images as a base, better package management, and easier installation on Windows and macOS systems.

"AI Workbench can bring generative AI development to any GPU-enabled environment with a unified interface on hundreds of millions of modern NVIDIA RTX-powered workstations and PCs, or across the data center and the cloud," Franklin and Chaubal claim of the new release. "Mac users can install AI Workbench, and migrate projects to NVIDIA-powered systems for collaboration and greater compute power."

NVIDIA AI Workbench is available to download now on the official website, free of charge; paid support is available through the NVIDIA AI Enterprise license, but is not required to use the software. NVIDIA AI Workbench is also available through NVIDIA LaunchPad, for "immediate, short-term access."

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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