Daily report: NBSO and nVidia

By Oguz Meteer

 

Breakfast and NBSO:

This morning I was a bit late for breakfast so I had to eat a less than perfect pancake, but I was still glad I could eat something. After the breakfast we walked to NBSO (Netherlands Business Support Office) which is located on the 31st floor of a building on Montgomery Street. We met with several people, Beth Suzan being one of them. She gave us an interesting presentation about the business culture and the do's and don'ts in America and I found this especially helpfull because most of us would consider starting a business in the United States. I'm sure that the tips she gave are going to prove very helpful.

 

Lunch at Escape from New York:

For lunch we had some delicious pizza at a nice location between two high buildings which made for a nice scenery. Interesting to note that we all started to discuss the similarities and differences between the Dutch, Americans and the Germans (thanks to Michael), after the presentation of Beth Suzan. It was a nice change from the usual less scientific chats we have.

 

nVidia = awesomeness:

Next stop was nVidia. Now, I have to be honest, I'm a bit of an nVidia fanboy so I was a bit biased. We met with Ken Brown who I thanked because he helped me quite a bit. The campus was big and quite impressive, as was the building we entered. There were lots of big and noisy servers and also a lot of patents on the walls. After everyone got their visitor card we went to a room where the presentations were going to be held. What got my attention was a notice that said that you had to pay attention, that electronic devices like laptops were not needed and that you had to respect everyone and their opinions. Ken introduced us to Ujesh who works at the marketing department and he told us a bit about the goals and product lines of nVidia. Apparently he is also a rock drummer so he is a cool guy in my book (too bad I didn't bring my guitar, we could have jammed!).

After the presentation of Ujesh we were introduced to Chief Scientist and Vice President Bill Dally and I have to admit that I am ashamed that I didn't know him considering he's been a driving force behind parallel computing and having written over 200 papers. After a slow start we bombarded him with questions and because there was so little time we left with more questions than we had at the beginning. He gave us some pretty interesting details about what they are researching at nVidia, so I'm glad that we could talk to someone who knows all about the technical details of their products.

After that we had a tour around the campus which was nice. We also saw the GPU demonstration that the Mythbusters presented. Last but not least we had a demo about nVidia 3D Vision, which we also use at work, so I already was familiar with it. Andrew told us a bit about the technical details of how their stereo vision solution works and gave us hints about what they are researching now. Everyone was impressed with what they saw, literally. All in all a succes if you ask me.

 

Dinner at Elephant & Castle:

First we had to outside for a while, but luckily I had an interesting talk with some of the other participants who were a bit less knowledgable about graphics. In the discussion we cleared some of the questions that came to mind after the questionnaire with Bill Dally because of all the technical details he provided in his answers.

When we went inside I saw that the pub/restaurant was pretty full so I was worried that it was going to be unconfortable. Instead we went to a closed room in the basement, which was confortable but I would have preferred to mingle with the locals so that I could have a nice chat with them. Luckily the discussions with the other participants about what we like to eat, who had experience with soft drugs (remember, we are Dutch), ray tracing and physics proved to be entertaining and fruitfull.

 

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