Amazon Recruits AI Luminary Andrew Ng to Its Board

In a sign of the times, cloud and e-commerce giant Amazon has brought renowned AI researcher Andrew Ng onto its board of directors.

Ng's addition, announced Thursday, signals Amazon's deepening commitment to artificial intelligence, both in its e-commerce business and its massive Amazon Web Services cloud.

When it comes to today's white-hot generative AI market, Amazon was slower out of the gate compared to rivals like Microsoft and Google. However, recent moves -- from its ongoing expansion of the Amazon Bedrock platform to its $4 billion investment in LLM maker Anthropic -- have begun to move the needle more in Amazon's favor.

The addition of Ng to its board, which took effect on April 9, is a major coup for Amazon.

"Dr. Ng is a global leader in both AI and education," the company wrote in its announcement. "His academic and private sector work developing machine learning and deep learning algorithms and supporting companies developing and adopting AI applications will help to inform the Board's perspective on the opportunities and challenges that AI presents and its transformative social and business potential."

Ng is a prolific researcher in the fields of AI, machine learning and robotics, having written or contributing to over 200 papers (some sample titles are "Classification with Hybrid Generative/Discriminative Models," "Convolutional Deep Belief Networks for Scalable Unsupervised Learning of Hierarchical Representations" and "Cheap and Fast -- But Is It Good? Evaluating Non-Expert Annotations for Natural Language Tasks").

He's the founder of multiple companies, namely AI education firm DeepLearning.AI, computer vision software maker Landing AI, and the massively popular online course provider Coursera.

Previously, Ng worked at Google as the founder and leader of Google Brain, laying the groundwork for what would eventually become the TensorFlow open source deep learning library. He was also the chief scientist at Chinese Internet giant Baidu. Currently, Ng is an adjunct professor of computer science at Stanford University.

"We seek to have appropriate experience and perspectives at all levels of the company, including our Board of Directors," said Amazon, "and we're excited to welcome Dr. Ng."

About the Author

Gladys Rama (@GladysRama3) is the editorial director of Converge360.


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