Depending on how you look at it, Google wants to jump on the hot new trend in tech or is trying to appease future robot-brain overlords. Google Research will now be called Google AI, and the company is wasting no time (none!) in putting all its dollars—of which it has several—behind computer learning.
This all falls in line with the Silicon Valley party line of “make everything A.I.” This happens every other year or so, when a big tech titan makes a slight pivot and everyone else follows, like some cruel capitalist version of the game ‘telephone’. Not even 24 hours before the Google news broke, Facebook had decided to name its Oculus wing the Facebook Reality Lab (catchy!). All of San Jose is a little like a middle school, where a couple of cool kids deem what’s cool and then everyone else tries to catch up. It happens on a smaller scale with Silicon Valley’s weird obsession with unfiltered water and keeping chickens.
Needless to say, A.I. could shape the world in a way far beyond chicken and swamp water could ever do. One particular smart person is even saying that A.I. could be the downfall of mankind. Fun! Let’s hope that Google’s A.I. venture is more successful than its attempt at waving and seeing things.