Siri Listening iPhone Desk

Apple continues bolstering its artificial intelligence and machine learning talent with new acquisitions, the latest being an alleged purchase of Inductiv.

Inductiv was co-founded by three machine-learning experts: University of Waterloo professor Ihab Ilyas, University of Wisconsin-Madison assistant professor Theodoros Rekatsinas and Stanford University professor Christopher Ré. Interestingly, Ré previously co-founded AI startup Lattice Data that specializes in so-called dark data — and Apple acquired Lattice back in 2017.

Mark Gurman, reporting for Bloomberg:

The engineering team from Waterloo, Ontario-based Inductiv joined Apple in recent weeks to work on Siri, machine learning and data science. Inductiv developed technology that uses artificial intelligence to automate the task of identifying and correcting errors in data.

Having clean data is important for machine learning, a popular and powerful type of AI that helps software improve with less human intervention. The work falls under the category of data science, a key element of Apple’s broader machine-learning strategy.

Apple has confirmed the deal via its boilerplate statement, saying it “buys smaller technology companies from time to time and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.

Inductiv’s LinkedIn profile and a web search reveal that the startup doesn’t have a website.

Thus far, the Cupertino tech giant has snapped up more than a dozen companies in the fields of artificial intelligence and machine learning in an effort to improve Siri under the leadership of former Google executive John Giannandrea, who is in charge of Apple’s Siri and machine learning projects as Apple’s Senior Vice President of Machine Learning.

What do you make of this acquisition-hire?

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