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扎克伯格夫妇的慈善机构将收购人工智能创业公司

Jonathan Vanian 2017年02月20日

Facebook首席执行官马克·扎克伯格创立的Chan Zuckerberg Initiative在去年9月宣布未来10年将斥资30亿美元支持治疗人类疾病的项目,如今,这家机构收购了一家初创企业,目的是为了在医疗保健行业利用人工智能为人类造福。

Facebook创始人兼首席执行官马克·扎克伯格(右)与妻子普莉希拉·陈。

扎克伯格夫妇的私人慈善机构Chan Zuckerberg Initiative最近搭上了人工智能。

2015年,Facebook首席执行官马克·扎克伯格和妻子普莉希拉·陈创立了慈善机构Chan Zuckerberg Initiative,本次收购对象是专门研究医疗保健行业人工智能以及相关数据分析技术的初创公司Meta。

最近,Chan Zuckerberg Initiative科学总裁科妮莉亚·巴格曼和首席技术官布莱恩·平克顿在机构的Facebook页面上宣布了这一消息。收购的细节并未披露。

Meta的主要业务是利用自然语言处理和机器学习等人工智能技术筛选数百万份科学技术论文,找出对医疗卫生专家最重要的文献。IBM以及旗下沃森(Watson)电脑业务等等公司都认为,今后人工智能技术可以从每天成千上万篇研究论文中汲取精华,帮助繁忙的医生紧密把握最新的医疗领域动向。

Meta公司首席执行官山姆·莫利尼斯在一篇博文中表示,加入Chan Zuckerberg Initiative之后,比起之前用初创公司的身份,与学术部门和研究者打交道会更容易。

巴格曼和平克顿在声明中称,Meta的技术可以“大幅加快科学进步”,而且有望实现医学突破,例如帮助研究者更快发现冠心病和寨卡病毒的有效治疗手段等。

“我们会共同努力,帮Meta更快成长,更好地协助整个科学界,而且会向所有研究者免费提供研发出的工具和功能。” 巴格曼和平克顿写道。

莫利尼斯在文中表示,由于即将被收购,Meta不会把赚钱当成首要目标,而会更集中在无私的目标上。

“资助科学家会形成良性循环,因为科学家可以研发新工具,为推动更快发展找到新机会。” 莫利尼斯写道。“Chan Zuckerberg Initiative也发现了这一‘滚雪球’效应,所以Meta可以成为推动人类医疗卫生进步的关键一环,我们相信本世纪内就会实现巨大突破。”

去年9月,Chan Zuckerberg Initiative宣布未来10年将斥资30亿美元支持治疗人类疾病的项目。

也是在9月,Chan Zuckerberg Initiative聘请了英国阿斯利康(AstraZeneca)前非执行董事巴格曼担任科学总裁。(财富中文网)

作者:Jonathan Vanian

译者:夏林

Mark Zuckerberg, right, founder and CEO of Facebook, and wife Priscilla Chan.

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is getting some help from artificial intelligence.

The philanthropic organization, founded by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan in 2015, will buy Meta, a startup focusing on artificial intelligence and related data analytic technology in the healthcare industry.

The deal was disclosed in a Facebook post recently by Chan Zuckerberg Initiative president of science Cornelia Bargmann and the organization’s CTO Brian Pinkerton. Terms of the deal were not revealed.

Meta specializes in using artificial intelligence technologies like natural language processing and machine learning to sift through millions of scientific and technology papers and identify which papers should presumably be most important to health-care professionals. Several companies like IBM and its Watson business are betting that A.I. technologies can help cut through the noise of the thousands of research papers published each day and help busy doctors keep up to date of the latest health trends.

Meta CEO Sam Molyneux said in a blog post that by joining the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Meta team would now find it easier to work with academics and researchers than it has before as a startup.

Bargmann and Pinkerton wrote that Meta’s technologies can “dramatically accelerate scientific progress” and could help perform feats like helping researchers more quickly discover promising treatments for ailments like coronary heart disease and the Zika virus.

“We will be working to make Meta even more powerful and useful for the entire scientific community, and are committed to offering these tools and features for free to all researchers.” Bargmann and Pinkerton wrote.

Molyneux wrote that because of the pending acquisition, Meta would not focus on making money like a typical business but on more altruistic motives.

“Helping scientists will produce a virtuous cycle, as they develop new tools that in turn unlock additional opportunities for faster advancement.” wrote Molyneux. “The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’s recognition of this 'meta' effect is why Meta can be a key piece of the puzzle to enable the future of human health that we believe to be possible within this century.”

In September, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative said it would spend $3 billion over the next decade on projects intended to cure and treat all human diseases.

The Chan Zuckerberg also hired Bargmann, a former non-executive director of AstraZeneca, to become its president of science in September.

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