Google Plans Big AI Push in China

15 December, 2017, 02:31 | Author: Archie Newman
  • Jack Ma'We shouldn't fear AI

The multi-billion-dollar technology company Google is planning to broaden its horizons by deepening its push into artificial intelligence (AI) with the help of a research facility they opened in China even though its search services remains blocked in the country.

Recently, in a blog post on the company's website, Google stated that the new research center was an important part of its mission as an "AI first company".

Likewise, it seems that China, which is desperate to make the most of advances in AI, can not ignore Google's efforts in the field (see "China's AI Awakening"). The company says it's already hired "top experts", with respected AI veteran - and Google Cloud chief scientist - Fei-Fei Li leading and coordinating work. According to Sinovation Ventures AI Institute, a research arm of a venture capital group led by former Google China head Kai-fu Lee, more than half of the citations in the top 100 AI journals and conferences go to ethnic Chinese.

But Google has been looking for a way back into China. As Li points out in her blog post, "China is home to numerous world's top experts in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. Whether a breakthrough occurs in Silicon Valley, Beijing or anywhere else, it has the potential to make everyone's life better for the entire world", Li wrote in the blog post.

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Most importantly, the lab should attract local AI talent who might not otherwise have the opportunity to work for Google.

This will mark as the company's first such AI facility in Asia, after the ones in New York, Toronto, London and Zurich.

One of the reasons behind this decision is that numerous world's top AI experts are based in China. Earlier this year, Eric Schmidt, chairman of Alphabet, and Google CEO Sundar Pichai visited China.

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