‘Deep reinforcement learning may not be the royal road to artificial general intelligence, but DeepMind itself is a formidable operation, tightly run and well funded, with hundreds of PhDs.’
In WIRED Gary Marcus rhetorically asks if AI is faltering given the losses reported by one of its biggest research labs. DeepMind, owned by Alphabet, reported a $572 operating loss for the year with another $1 billion debt about to come due.
Marcus answers his own question: big costs aren’t unusual for big science. Yet he’s skeptical about the path being pursued by DeepMind. The London-based lab has been focusing on artificial general intelligence using a model known as reinforcement learning. With it, DeepMind’s model defeated the world’s best GO player, amongst other successes. Marcus doubts it is indicative of commercially-scaleable results.
Gary Marcus is a Professor in Psychology at NYU, an entrepreneur, and author. His forthcoming book (with Ernest Davis) is Rebooting AI.