Google has just bought artificial intelligence start-up company DeepMind for $500 million. The sought-after company was also in talks with Facebook for the buyout.
Google will be able to tailor its search capabilities to the individual better thanks to artificial intelligence. Rather than just using popular words it will be able to infer what you're asking and offer perfect results suited to you. We imagine Android will grow in smarts too.
DeepMind was founded by neuroscientist and former chess child prodigy Demis Hassabis, Skype and Kazaa developer Jaan Tallin, and researcher Shane Legg. The team should join futurist, author and inventor Ray Kurzweil who is director of engineering focused on machine learning and language processing at Google.
Kurzweil's goal is to build a search engine that's so smart it'll act like a "cybernetic friend". We're sure that's what Skynet's creators thought before the Terminator appeared on the scene. And with Google's purchase of (primarily military) robotics specialist Boston Dynamics last month we're genuinely starting to get a little worried.
But before you go building a bunker in your back garden and smashing all your gadgets, Google has agreed to establish an ethics board to ensure the AI isn't abused.
Carnegie Mellon professor Larry Wasserman wrote that the: "Start-up is trying to build a system that thinks. This was the original dream of AI. As Shane [Legg] explained to me, there has been huge progress in both neuroscience and ML and their goal is to bring these things together. I thought it sounded crazy until he told me the list of famous billionaires who have invested in the company."