Apple officially joins non-profit AI research group as one of the founding members

Apple has officially joined the non-profit organization Partnership on AI as a founding member alongside other technology giants like Amazon, Facebook, Google, IBM and Microsoft. Apple has been involved and collaborating with the Partnership on AI since before it was first announced last year and is “thrilled” to formalize its membership, the organization said Friday.

According to Bloomberg, joining the non-profit is the latest sign that Apple is opening up more and becoming less secretive when it comes to artificial intelligence.

Partnership on AI also announced the inaugural Board of Trustees:

  • Dario Amodei (OpenAI)
  • Subbarao Kambhampati (Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence & ASU)
  • Deirdre Mulligan (UC Berkeley)
  • Carol Rose (American Civil Liberties Union)
  • Eric Sears (MacArthur Foundation)
  • Jason Furman (Peterson Institute of International Economics)
  • Greg Corrado (Google/DeepMind)
  • Tom Gruber (Apple)
  • Ralf Herbrich (Amazon)
  • Eric Horvitz (Microsoft)
  • Yann Lecun (Facebook)
  • Francesca Rossi (IBM)

All Board members will share equal voting rights.

The first meeting of the Board of Trustees is taking place on Friday, February 3 in San Francisco.

Companies like Twitter, Intel and China’s Baidu are yet to become members.

Established last September, Partnership on AI says it aims to “conduct research, recommend best AI practices and publish research under an open license.” In December 2016, Apple published its first research paper covering a technique for improving the training of an algorithm’s ability to recognize objects on images using computer-generated images.

The move followed Apple’s decision to permit its artificial intelligence and machine learning researchers to cover with colleagues and publicize some of their work and breakthroughs, something it frowned upon in the past.

Industry watchers long insisted that Apple’s secretive culture was preventing its researchers from sharing their findings with other machine learning and artificial intelligence experts while hampering its ability to advance Siri and recruit the brightest minds in the field.

For more on Apple’s efforts in the fields of advanced artificial intelligence and machine learning research and consumer technologies, read Steven Levy’s in-depth analysis over at Medium’s Backchannel.

Source: Partnership on AI via Bloomberg