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Facebook is strengthening the ranks of its artificial intelligence research team with the addition of six new employees, including three who the company brought on board from positions at Microsoft Research.

Leon Bottou
Leon Bottou
Léon Bottou left Microsoft Research after five years to go work at Facebook as a research lead. He’s best known for his work on “deep” neural connections from the 1990s and work on large scale learning in the 2000s.

In addition, he developed the DjVu document compression technology and Lush programming language with Yann LeCun, the director of Facebook’s AI research lab.

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Anitha Kannan

Anitha Kannan worked on projects involving computational education, computer vision and e-commerce search with a focus on linking structured and unstructured data sources during her work at MSR from 2006 to 2014.

During that time, she was awarded the Gold Star Award twice for work of hers that was transferred to Microsoft’s products.

Michael Auli spent two years as a postdoctoral researcher at MSR, following his PhD work at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Michael Auli
Michael Auli

He focuses on natural language parsing statistical machine translation, language modeling, structured prediction, large-scale discriminative training, deep learning and recurrent neural networks.

The news comes at a time when AI and machine learning experts are a hot commodity in the tech industry. Thanks to the power of cloud computing and the explosion of data from connected devices, it’s possible for tech companies to more affordably harness the power of artificial intelligence to power new applications and drive additional innovation.

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