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Santa Clara’s Nvidia named smartest company in the world

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In a region that appears dominated by consumer-facing tech companies such as Google, Apple, Facebook, Twitter and Uber, computer processor maker Nvidia flies under the radar.

But as its products expand far beyond its traditional computer-game market, the Santa Clara firm is getting recognized for its innovations and success.

Nvidia has been named the smartest company on the planet for 2017 by the MIT Technology Review.

Central to Nvidia’s success of late has been its development of processors for artificially intelligent systems, the Technology Review noted. As cloud computing and autonomous driving take off, the firm’s processors are in high demand.

“The company says all the major internet and cloud-service providers use its chips to accelerate their processes, and a number of large car makers, including Toyota, are using its autonomous-driving technology,” according to the Technology Review.

Chinese internet-search titan Baidu has just announced Nvidia as a partner in development of its “Apollo” self-driving vehicle platform, along with Ford, Intel and Microsoft.

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Nvidia has also excelled at making a profit — its $6.9 billion in sales last year put it at No. 18 on the Mercury News’ SV150 list of top Silicon Valley companies by revenue, but its $1.6 billion in profit made it the 14th most profitable of the group.

The Technology Review’s top five of the “50 Smartest Companies of 2017” were, after Nvidia, the SpaceX rocket company, Amazon, Mountain View consumer genetic-testing firm 23andMe (“more than two million customers worldwide”) and Google’s parent firm Alphabet.

Photo: An Nvidia processor (Pixabay/JacekAbramowicz)

Tags: 23andme, Alphabet, autonomous, Baidu, chips, Google, Nvidia, processors, self-driving, SpaceX

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