Silicon Valley Heads To Canada For Artificial Intelligence Experts
Artificial Intelligence (AI) – the technology that powers digital assistants, voice recognition software and even robots – is one of the pillars of the fast-moving tech industry. And Silicon Valley is eyeing Canadian talent to fulfil its AI dreams.
According to a report by Bloomberg, Canada – a leader in the field of AI – has become a favoured hunting ground for Silicon Valley companies seeking experts in this field.
“Several leading Canadian researchers and professors have defected to U.S. tech companies such as Google. Top US universities are scooping up AI experts, too. They’re in hot demand because the emerging technology will underpin the next wave of innovation – from self-driving cars and personal assistants to smarter prosthetic limbs and industrial robots,” the report said.
The report says in just three years, University of Alberta lost influential professor Kevin Murphy to Google; University of British Columbia researcher Nando de Freitas shifted base to Oxford University and now works part-time at Google. Renowned University of Toronto professor Ruslan Salakhutdinov recently said he’ll go to work for the machine learning department at Carnegie Mellon University.
In 2013, Google acquired image-recognition startup DNNresearch, co-founded by University of Toronto professor Geoffrey Hinton, who helped develop the neural network technology. Twitter recently purchased Whetlab, a machine-learning startup whose founders include four University of Toronto alums, says Bloomberg.
The brain drain has not gone unnoticed in Canada, where the AI community is opening more accelerators and new programmes dedicated to research in the field