Key Baidu exec leaves to create own AI startup

Andrew Ng, a co-founder of Coursera and Baidu chief scientist for three years, has left the company to create his own AI startup, called Deeplearning.ai.

Ng has been a prominent face at Baidu, helping the company’s expansion into artificial intelligence and autonomous cars. In his leaving message, Ng said that he wanted to create an “AI community” for developers to share and explore what’s new in the industry.

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Not much has been said about Deeplearning.ai, apart from Baidu confirming that the new startup has “no association” with the company. Ng has not detailed what the startup will try and achieve and whether it’ll be a “community” or a company.

CGTN, who originally reported the news, said that the registration information matched the Sunnyvale, California address where Baidu’s AI research campus is located, hinting at a possible secret collaboration between Ng’s old employer.

AI startups are becoming Silicon Valley’s latest craze, as the drop in price for cloud computing and the capabilities of computers brings AI and deep learning to life. The researchers and experts in the field are coming out from the classrooms and incubators to either join high profile tech companies, which are paying a pretty penny for their talents, or starting a new venture on their own.

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