Report: Google DeepMind Scientists May Quit to Form AI Firm

    Report: Google DeepMind Scientists May Quit to Form AI Firm
    Photo: Unsplash

    The Facts

    • Google DeepMind scientists Laurent Sifre and Karl Tuyls have reportedly initiated talks to quit the firm and set up a new artificial intelligence (AI) startup in Paris.

    • According to Bloomberg News, the duo has already given notice to leave Alphabet Inc's AI division. Their company is tentatively called Holistic and has raised about €200M ($220M) in financing.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    Google is apparently focused on turning its immense AI capital into marketable products, which is compromising frontier research and putting off senior staff keen on cutting-edge work. These ex-employees have instead been setting up their own firms, and 16 former DeepMinders established their startups in the 12 months leading to November 2023. The idea of Holistic only shows that the hemorrhaging, which is detrimental to bigger companies and the field of AI as a whole, hasn't stopped.

    Narrative B

    Big minds in AI leaving tech majors to join or find startups is nothing new, and DeepMind isn't the only company witnessing such departures. Companies like Inflection, Cohere, Adept, and Anthropic, which will potentially lead next-generation AI research, have recently gained talent from conventional giants like Google, Meta, and OpenAI. It all indicates that the field of AI, already firing on all cylinders, is at a potential inflection point.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that there will be at least 43.1K computer and information research scientists in the US at the start of 2030, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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