Ali Farhadi, a computer vision expert and startup founder who most recently oversaw Apple’s machine learning programmes, will rejoin the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence (AI2) in Seattle. He will be the second CEO in the history of the non-profit research organization.
Farhadi developed and served as CEO of AI2 spinout Xnor.ai before selling the AI firm to Apple in 2020 for an estimated $200 million. It is one of the institute’s largest commercial successes to date.
His resignation from Apple and return to AI2 on July 31 coincides with a turning point in the development of artificial intelligence, as the world’s attention is focused on generative AI technologies driven by massive language models.
Farhadi replaces Oren Etzioni, who was chosen by the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen to lead the launch of AI2 over ten years ago. Last year, Etzioni made the decision to leave his position as CEO, but he promised to stay on as a board member, counselor, and technical director of the AI2 Incubator. Peter Clark, a longtime leader in AI2 research, has been acting as interim CEO.
With the help of AI2’s distinctive status as an independent charity, Farhadi will be entrusted with solidifying and improving AI2’s position. In addition to leading AI2, Farhadi is anticipated to continue teaching at the University of Washington’s Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science and Engineering.
Along with his competence in AI, the board members of AI2 claim that Farhadi’s prior positions as the CEO of a startup and a leader within a big business have given him a distinctive viewpoint and range of knowledge for to equip him for this position.