For any cloud to be taken seriously, it has to meet an ever rising bar of features. Machine learning seems to be on that list, as all the major cloud providers now feature it.
But how they go about doing it is another story. Aside from the “curated API vs. open-ended algorithm marketplace” models, there are the “everything and then some vs. just enough” variants. Here’s how the four big cloud providers — IBM, Microsoft, Google, and Amazon — stack up next to each other in machine learning.
IBM: Turning the ship with, Watson at the helm
When IBM first announced it would turn its Watson AI system into a consumable service, the questions piled up. What would it look like? How would it be consumed? But most important, how much support would it lend IBM’s effort toreinvent itself as a cloud giant?
Two years and change later, IBM has rolled out an array of machine learning-powered services on its Bluemix PaaS: weather prediction, for instance, or systemsfor analyzing language, image recognition, language translation, sentiment and tone analysis, and so on.