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Facebook’s campaign to grow its artificial intelligence talent pool has announced a new victory.

The social networking company’s AI lab today revealed — in a Facebook post, naturally — its latest high-profile hire: Vladimir Vapnik. He’s credited with coming up with the first support vector machine (SVM) algorithm. SVMs are widely used today for machine learning purposes. They can come in handy for analyzing text, images, and other types of content.

Vapnik’s arrival at Facebook from the University of London follows last year’s appointment of Yann LeCun, a leading figure in the AI community, as its head of AI research. LeCun, the pioneer of convolutional neural networks — a popular architecture for the branch of AI known as deep learning — came from New York University.

“Vladimir is rejoining some of his long-time collaborators Jason Weston, Ronan Collobert, and Yann LeCun,” the Facebook post states. The bunch worked together in research at AT&T.


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In case you’re just tuning in now, several technology companies have been on deep-learning hiring sprees. Even music-streaming services are looking into the area.

Facebook, with its vast quantity of data, has plenty of opportunities, and the hiring of Vapnik should only help attract still more talent.

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