Google Buys A.I. Company for Search, Not Robots

“I’d like to go on a vacation somewhere warm over the summer, but only have a budget of $1,000. Where should I go?”

If you search Google with a very long and human question like this, you will see a series of strange links to articles like, “7 Frugal Habits Everyone Should Develop,” “Successful People Who Prove You Should Use Your Vacation Time,” and “How to Plan a Vacation.”

Google wants to change that, which is why the company bought the British artificial intelligence developer, DeepMind, on Monday.

Some in the blogosphere saw the acquisition differently, speculating that Google was buying DeepMind to help make robots and thermostats more intelligent — presumably for world domination.

While this new artificial intelligence technology could be used with robots one day, possibly even in the not-too-distant future, for now, Google was hoping to continue its world domination of search.

This is why Facebook was also competing to buy DeepMind, as The Information noted Monday. Facebook doesn’t have any humanoid robots, robotic dogs or Internet-connected thermostats. What Facebook does have is something that Google dominates: search.

ReCode first reported the deal on Sunday, saying Google had agreed to pay $400 million for the company.

People who work with Google but could not be named because they were not allowed to speak publicly for the company, said the acquisition of the artificial intelligence software had nothing to do with robots, but everything to do with semantic technology and the ability to understand what people were asking for online and answer in a very human way.

While a Google spokesman confirmed the purchase of DeepMind, he declined to comment about why Google had acquired the company or the type of projects the new team of researchers and scientists would be working on. Read More News>>

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