Consumer Internet companies are in a race to build out their artificial intelligence talent and acquire the most advanced machine-learning systems.
They’re doing so in order to finally make sense of the massive amount of data they’re collecting — from how people arrive at purchase decisions, to the meaning of the text in every user’s posts.
In a recent report from BI Intelligence, we show how advances
in “deep learning,” cutting-edge artificial intelligence research that attempts to program machines to perform high-level thought and abstractions, are helping social networks and their advertisers glean insights from this vast ocean of unstructured consumer data. Thanks to deep learning, social media has the potential to become far more personalised. New marketing fields are quickly emerging, too:
audience clustering, predictive marketing, and sophisticated brand sentiment analysis.
Here are some of the major acquisitions and hires from the AI field that occurred in recent months:
- Facebook launched a new research lab dedicated entirely to advancing the field of AI. Deep learning expert Yann LeCun is directing the efforts of the lab.
- Google acquired DeepMind, a company that built learning algorithms for e-commerce, simulations, and games, for $US400 million. DeepMind’s 50 employees were considered to be among the most talented experts in the field of AI. Google also hired deep learning pioneer Geoff Hinton to improve products such as Android voice search.
- LinkedIn acquired Bright, a company that focused on data- and algorithm-driven job matches, for $US120 million — its largest acquisition to date.
- Pinterest acquired VisualGraph, a company that specialised in image recognition and visual search. VisualGraph CEO Kevin Jang helped build Google’s first machine vision application to improve image search.
In full, the report: