I am a huge fan of artificial intelligence (AI). After all, it is the technology that might eventually make my dream of a realistic robot girlfriend a reality. Sure, many people are wary of this technology, claiming it could lead to machines becoming self-aware and destroying humanity. However, those people are simply paranoid conspiracy theorists (who've watched the Terminator movies too often). AI is something that should improve technology and help humanity overall.
Google is a very forward-thinking company, often on the forefront of technology and ideas. Now, the search-giant has announced that its DeepMind division is partnering with the renowned Oxford University for artificial intelligence research.
"Google DeepMind will be working with two of Oxford’s cutting edge Artificial Intelligence research teams. Prof Nando de Freitas, Prof Phil Blunsom, Dr Edward Grefenstette and Dr Karl Moritz Hermann, who teamed up earlier this year to co-found Dark Blue Labs, are four world leading experts in the use of deep learning for natural language understanding. They will be spearheading efforts to enable machines to better understand what users are saying to them", says Demis Hassabis, co-founder of DeepMind and Vice President of Engineering at Google.
Hassabis further explains, "also joining the DeepMind team will be Dr Karen Simonyan, Max Jaderberg and Prof Andrew Zisserman, one of the world’s foremost experts on computer vision systems, a Fellow of the Royal Society, and the only person to have been awarded the prestigious Marr Prize three times. As co-founders of Vision Factory, their aim was to improve visual recognition systems using deep learning. Dr Simonyan and Prof Zisserman developed one of the winning systems at the recent 2014 ImageNet competition, which is regarded as the most competitive and prestigious image recognition contest in the world".
In other words, Google is assembling a team of smart people to become something of a nerdy Justice League. The search giant will be the money behind the minds, as something of a financier. Of course, money aside, Google has many bright minds in-house that will surely contribute to this artificial intelligence think-tank.
Hopefully the team will put some focus on robot girlfriends, but if not, what types of projects would you like to see created as a result of this relationship? Tell me in the comments.