Microsoft just acquired Bonsai, a startup focused on artificial intelligence research. Its novel system is going to be deployed atop the company’s Azure public cloud.
The company discussed the acquisition on their official blog, stating it will give them “an end-to-end solution for building, operating and enhancing “brains” for autonomous systems.” Bonsai’s CEO is actually Mark Hammond, a former employee of Microsoft. Their system is based on reinforcement learning, which implies training systems through trial and error in order to obtain better results.
“Bonsai has developed a novel approach using machine teaching that abstracts the low-level mechanics of machine learning, so that subject matter experts, regardless of AI aptitude, can specify and train autonomous systems to accomplish tasks. The actual training takes place inside a simulated environment”, explained Microsoft.
The Californian company’s platform paired with simulation tools will provide the perfect system to build “any kind of autonomous system for control and calibration tasks.” Microsoft plans to have it compose with Azure Machine Learning, run on their own Azure Cloud with GPUs and Brainwave. To cap it off, the resulting models will be deployed and managed in Azure IoT.
By doing so, the company will have an end-to-end solution for enhancing brains and pushing forward the autonomous industry.