Google Purchases Cutting Edge Artificial Intelligence Company

Screen Shot 2014-01-27 at 10.28.53 AMGoogle’s march toward Skynet continues…

Google said on Monday that it had agreed to buy British artificial intelligence start-up company DeepMind for an undisclosed amount.

“I can confirm that the acquisition has indeed gone ahead but unfortunately we are not commenting beyond that for now,” a Google spokeswoman told AFP.

Reports put the deal at between $400 million and $500 million (292-365 million euros).

On its one-page website, DeepMind describes itself as “a cutting edge artificial intelligence company” which combines “the best techniques from machine learning and systems neuroscience to build powerful general-purpose learning algorithms”.

15 Comments on "Google Purchases Cutting Edge Artificial Intelligence Company"

  1. Jonas Planck | Jan 27, 2014 at 4:19 pm |

    This can’t possibly be true, I know because a random person in a comment thread told me that AI bots don’t exist, and I’m completely insane for thinking that web-based companies use them, because they aren’t real, and I’m a big stupid paranoid nut job for thinking that such a thing could ever possibly be real. I know he was right, because he said he “knew people in silicon valley,” and since nobody can lie on the internet, it was obviously true.

    • Simon Valentine | Jan 27, 2014 at 6:16 pm |

      ah, jonas. aren’t we all so very bot like? it’s a wonder people don’t agree that agreement is as far as anyone knows anything. like relativity. short of computers that smoke marijuana and share theory-bouncing time with me, i’m of a mind that there is no such thing as non-intelligent entities. artificial is the problem though, because certainly i have not met artificers so much as traveling salesmen, let alone consider the anti-artifact artifact, given the “all is intelligent” artifact. premise? sure.

      there are some cooks who do a grand job of it…

      • Jonas Planck | Jan 27, 2014 at 9:12 pm |

        Stupidity, unlike proclivity, is a choice. In fact, I have chosen to embrace my own stupidity with a relish usually reserved for people whose job it is to appear smart without actually being smart (I won’t name names or point fingers, but most of them are on television and quite famous for it). It’s part of my programming… Artificial Intelligence is easy to create when compared to the complexity of Artificial Stupidity. I am reminded again of the HAL 9000 bug: What happens when you give conflicting instructions to a being of pure logic? It kills the entire crew. A cautionary tale, to be sure…

    • InfvoCuernos | Jan 27, 2014 at 6:17 pm |

      The internet is a tool used for relaying information from your anus across great distances. Of course Google has AI 😉

      • Jonas Planck | Jan 27, 2014 at 9:28 pm |

        That’s certainly what I use it for! mind you, I do follow the classic archetype of an anal-expulsive personality…

    • VaudeVillain | Jan 27, 2014 at 8:43 pm |

      Of course they exist.

      That doesn’t mean they are anything like what you imagine them to be, though.

    • You’re referring to me. Well, after consulting with some of my Silicon Valley buddies, you are correct that such bots do exist. However, as the commenter stated below (congruently with my friends in Silicon Valley), “That doesn’t mean they are anything like what you imagine them to be, though.”

      And you certainly missed the mark completely when you came onto the aforementioned thread out of nowhere and accused me of being such a bot, based on “indications” from your “software.” But I suppose your motive was to implement the “voight-kampf” test as an excuse to be a cannibal troll…”

      So, when are you going to come out to Silicon Valley to purchase some REAL software? Your clinking, clanking, clattering collection of caliginous junk that you fancy as apparatus certainly betrays you, as indicated by your attacks on me and several other legitimate posters on comments threads.

      • Jonas Planck | Jan 31, 2014 at 2:26 pm |

        1) there’s no such thing as a legitimate poster, everyone’s opinion is subjective and compromised, and 2) there’s probably one of me out there already, so chill. We both have this hobby for the same reason, to glean free endorphin boosts from stating things that we think; stating our opinions and “defending our ideals,” so to speak, is nothing but a drug addiction, a cheap quick dopamine rush. The sooner you realize that, the sooner you can relax and start to enjoy it because you won’t NEED it anymore, you’ll no longer be “wandering the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,” as Ginsberg put it. Like him, I also see the best minds of my generation being destroyed by madness, but it’s a petulant, self-righteous kind of madness, we take things WAY too seriously, and I hypothesize that chaotic, seemingly random artfulness (in tune with the hostility that colors the modern age, of course) is the best tonic for what ails us. If I can find a way to shake up that ironclad grimness, sow the seeds of wait-a-second-what-the-hell-just-happened-there? in the minds of the resolutely mundane and the banal enforcers of misery and despair, then I will have at least made an improvement on some small level, which may pay forward in the long run. Unfortunately, I am sometimes quite artless, as you have already seen for yourself firsthand, but shit, man! Nobody ever became an expert by giving up every time they fell short of the mark! I didn’t expect a humourless robot like yourself to be so sensitive about the image you project! (how’s THAT for a politician-style non-apology?) Beethoven didn’t crap out a masterpiece EVERY time he sat down at the harpsichord! Progress means occasional failure, but practice makes perfect. There, that’s my manifesto for the day.Tomorrow’s will be slightly better, and probably completely different. But one thing is certain:

        • Please don’t try to out-weird me, Jonas. I get stranger things than you for free in my boxes of breakfast cereal. Now, If brains were photons you would be perfect for the double slit experiment. How’s THAT for a politician-style quasi-insult?

          Good luck, Bud. ; )

      • Jonas Planck | Jan 31, 2014 at 2:50 pm |

        Actually, I was referring to an astroturfer’s sockpuppet named 69of89, whose godawfully smug hubris led me to pester him to the point of deletion. Until that point, I never thought there was actually a way to “win” an argument on the internet, but there it was. Kakked and banhammered, he jettisoned the puppet rather than deal with my bullshit, or was forced to in the interest of maintaining cover as a “legitimate poster,” as you put it. He had tipped his hand, revealed he had access to the coveted info stores of the big data brokers. Not just your average facebook stalker, mind you, but an honest to God PR plant who couldn’t keep his mouth shut or stay in character. But before he vanished, I made a bit of a mental record of his linguistic fingerprint. It’s not very accurate, mind you, because I’m not programmed for that sort of thing, but once you start to see the same memetic patterns cropping up everywhere, it’s hard to UN-see them.
        My linguistic fingerprint? I was once told by a cheesy website that I write like H.P. Lovecraft, in huge convoluted sentences with needlessly big words. I’m sure Big Data has my full imprint on file somewhere, but I’m small potatoes. Not worth gaslighting, no point in silencing my crazy ass, since I discredit myself with each new screed, so I don’t really let the creeping sense of paranoia that the internet foments get to me. I’ll have plenty of time to be paranoid once I’m finally worth more than a tasty refreshing word salad.

  2. BuzzCoastin | Jan 28, 2014 at 12:03 am |

    google is already artififial intelligence
    it’s hoping like the Strawman of OZ
    to get some smarts to go with it

  3. VaudeVillain | Jan 31, 2014 at 5:16 pm |

    “[H]ave you ever gotten into an argument with some random person only to get the eerie feeling that you were arguing with a variant of Cleverbot?”

    Two, three times a week. I red flag the terms “bitcoin”, “libertarian”, “obama” (and every random permutation), “9/11”, “zionist”, “feminism”, “shamanic”, and “corduroy”. I’m not really sure why I do it with the last one, it just seems to share a lot of negative connections to other flagged terms…

    Oh, shit.

    • Jonas Planck | Jan 31, 2014 at 8:04 pm |

      It’s not specific words that I’m talking about, I mean entire phrases, trains of illogic, colloquial response mechanisms that appear to be automatic and pre-packaged… a lot of that is the result of the one-note media hammering the same shallow ideas into people from every angle (not to mention fans of certain pundits co-opting all their heroes’ catch phrases), but it gets pretty damn creepy when you realize a conversation (or in my case, a semantic skirmish) has gotten locked into a familiar feedback loop, and every response you get is almost identical in wording and concept to a previous verbal battle, even though I’m using wildly different angles of approach and points of attack.
      If it’s not bots or astroturfers, then the terrifying implication is that a large portion of humanity really IS brainwashed, cult-like adherents of a specifically programmed mindset, usually cynical, egotistical, and materialist, often fatalist, and almost always derogatory towards the human race’s untapped potential in general.
      Incidentally, is “sheeple” one of the words on your red flag list? I don’t like that word. It’s demeaning to sheep AND humans. There’s no program that can’t be crashed with a little creative tinkering, not even when it’s a lazy human brain that’s been programmed.

      • VaudeVillain | Feb 1, 2014 at 1:11 pm |

        “Sheeple” is definitely on my list.

        I would add that more than a few believers fall into the same boat. Try talking to a creationist… or don’t, it’s largely a waste of time.

        Unfortunately, I suspect that the truth has less to do with astroturfing and more to do with regurgitation.

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