Ex Google AI scientist joins Apple after resigning in protest for unfair practices

Apple, Inc. has hired a former Google AI scientist who resigned in protest against the firing of two employees from the Ethics division. Sammy Bengio, the ex-Google employee, will be in charge of a new AI team under John Giannandrea, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Machine Learning and AI Strategy.

Bengio was associated with the Google Brain research team since its inception and was involved in researching deep learning algorithms that are the founding blocs of AI systems for analyzing images, speeches, and similar data.

Bengio’s departure from Google followed the firings of the co-leaders of Google’s AI ethics team – Timnit Gebru and Margaret Mitchell – in December and February, respectively. Bengio announced his exit from Google after nearly 14 years at the company. In his resignation letter, he said he was looking for “other exciting opportunities.”

Tim Cook Pay Apple CEO Salary

Tim Cook, chief executive officer, Apple. (Image Credit: Apple Newsroom)

The firing at Google of Gebru and Mitchell has created turmoil in the Mountain View company, with a lot of employees protesting the move. Mitchell and Gebru were a part of the ethics issues team in AI and had voiced concern about Google’s workplace diversity and approach to reviewing research. Bengio had expressed support for the pair.

Google said in a statement Mitchell violated the company’s code of conduct and security policies by moving electronic files outside the company. Gebru exposed bias in facial analysis systems in the unit. Gebru said Google fired her after she expressed reservations about the company’s move not to publish a study that said AI that mimics language could hurt marginalized populations. She also said she was discriminated against for being black. Mitchell, a co-author of the paper, publicly criticized the company for firing Gebru and undermining the credibility of her work.

Nearly 2,700 Google workers have signed a letter protesting the exit of the two employees. Following the firings, Google announced a restructuring of its AI teams. It has said it will change procedures before July for reviewing its scientists’ work.

Google has appointed Marian Croak, a person of color and a leader in internet audio technology, to consolidate and manage 10 teams studying issues such as racial bias in algorithms and technology for disabled individuals.

Croak said that it was time to address concerns among AI ethics researchers and mitigate the damage done to the Google brand. “Please hold me fully responsible for trying to turn around that situation,” she said.

The company is also bringing in a consulting firm for a racial equity impact assessment. The firm’s recommendations however hard, will be implemented.

Anna Domanska
Anna Domanska is an Industry Leaders Magazine author possessing wide-range of knowledge for Business News. She is an avid reader and writer of Business and CEO Magazines and a rigorous follower of Business Leaders.

Recent Posts

Visa takes over Swedish fintech Tink in €1.8bn deal

Visa takes over Swedish fintech Tink in €1.8bn deal

: Visa is committed to perform better in the field of open banking sector by combining its networks and Tink’s modern technologies.
3 hours ago
BP Invests $7 million in Electric Vehicle Charging Technologies

BP Invests $7 million in Electric Vehicle Charging Technologies

Investment in IoTecha is linked with BP’s intention to produce over 70,000 public EV charging points globally by 2030
3 hours ago
Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite internet set to cover the globe soon

Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite internet set to cover the globe soon

Starlink, the satellite internet unit of Elon Musk’s SpaceX, will most likely be able to provide global coverage by September, according to the company’s president Gwynne S
1 day ago
At the next Krispy Kreme IPO, the donut maker aims to raise nearly $4 billion

At the next Krispy Kreme IPO, the donut maker aims to raise nearly $4 billion

Krispy Kreme, the popular donut chain, aims raise roughly $4 billion as it makes one of the biggest IPO debuts at the NYSE.
1 day ago
Panasonic hopes Blue Yonder acquisition will improve its software woes

Panasonic hopes Blue Yonder acquisition will improve its software woes

Most Japanese major companies, which at one time were leaders in consumer electronics, are struggling to find their feet in a world that has moved to digital software. Electronics
2 days ago
Ikea and Rockefeller Foundations to raise $10 billion for renewable energy projects in poor countries

Ikea and Rockefeller Foundations to raise $10 billion for renewable energy projects in poor countries

The Ikea and Rockefeller foundations are jointly launching a $10 billion fund to promote small-scale renewable power projects in developing nations. Both
3 days ago