Facebook poaches an NYU machine learning star to start a new AI lab that may very well end up knowing more about your social life than you do.
Facebook users upload 350 million photos onto the social network every day, far beyond the ability of human beings to comprehensively look at, much less analyze. And so that’s one big reason the company just hired NYU machine learning expert Yann LeCun as director of Facebook’s new AI laboratory, an eminent practitioner of an artificial intelligence (AI) technique known as “deep learning.”
“Yann LeCun's move will be an exciting step both for machine learning and for Facebook, which has a lot of unique social data,” says Andrew Ng, who directs the Stanford Artifical Intelligence Laboratory and who led a deep-learning project to analyze YouTube video for Google. “Machine learning is already used in hundreds of places throughout Facebook, ranging from photo tagging to ranking articles to your newsfeed. Better machine learning will be able to help improve all of these features, as well as help Facebook create new applications that none of us have dreamed of yet.”