Another Google AI boffin quits

@ 2021/04/08
Artificially the most intelligent thing to do

Google research manager Samy Bengio has quit the search engine outfit over the firings of his colleagues who questioned paper review and diversity practices.

Though at least two Google engineers had earlier resigned to protest the dismissal of artificial intelligence (AI) researcher Timnit Gebru, Bengio is the highest-profile employee to go.

Bengio spent about 14 years at the company and was among its first employees involved in a decade-old project known as Google Brain that advanced algorithms crucial to the functioning of various modern AI systems.

Andrew Ng, an early Brain member who now runs software startup Landing AI, said Bengio “has been instrumental to moving forward AI technology and ethics”. Another founding member, Jeff Dean, now oversees Google’s thousands of researchers.

Google Brain researcher Sara Hooker in a tweet described Bengio’s departure as “a huge loss for Google”.

Bengio said he decided to leave Google to pursue “other exciting opportunities” and that his last day would be April 28.

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