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Uber treads the AI path, acquires artificial intelligence startup Geometric Intelligence

Uber treads the AI path, acquires artificial intelligence startup Geometric Intelligence

Srishti Deoras
Uber AI Lab

Now Uber would count on the likes of tech giants such as Google, Amazon, IBM, Facebook and others as it is all set to invest in artificial intelligence.

It calls for a double celebration for Uber, which has long been in the business of using technology to keep people and things moving in the real world.

First- is their step to create Uber AI Labs, a new division of Uber, based in San Francisco, which, as is suggested by the name, will be dedicated to cutting-edge research in artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Second- it’s their acquisition of the AI research start-up Geometric Intelligence.

The deal which was closed at an undisclosed amount would see the 15 members from Geometric Intelligence forming the initial core of the AI Labs team.

The two-year-old company was founded by a group of noted scientists and leading machine learning pioneers with an aim to redefine boundaries of machine learning through innovative, patent-pending techniques that learn more efficiently from less data.

Uber is set to explore AI capabilities of Geometric Intelligence and utilize the same for solving problems like matching riders for UberPOOL, determining optimal route and tracking if the food or car you have ordered, working of self-driving vehicles which also includes Uber flying cars.

Jeff Holden, Chief Product Officer at Uber Technologies said in the company’s blog post, “negotiating the real world is a high-order intelligence problem. It possesses a lot of complexity and uncertainty”. With the development of AI labs, Uber intends to do away with these problems.

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Machine learning has seen quite a rapid growth in past few years, however this move by Uber will be the company’s first step in AI. The formation of Uber AI labs comes as a commitment of the company to advance the state of the art, driven by their vision that moving people and things in the physical world can be radically faster, safer and accessible to all.

The newly formed lab will be headed by Geometric’s Founding CEO, Gary Marcus, a neural science professor at New York University and a leading figure in AI.

Uber had earlier acquired Otto to lead Uber’s self-driving car effort.

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