Google Confirms Acquisition of Data Analytics Platform Kaggle

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Google has finally confirmed its acquisition of Kaggle, a well-known data science community that uses crowdsourcing as a way to create predictive models and analytics for different types of scientific data all over the world. With Google’s strong push towards machine learning, this addition gives them the power to improve their cloud and artificial intelligence efforts further than ever before.

Kaggle was rumored to have been acquired two days ago, with a confirmation by yesterday, March 8th in Google’s blog post. The team that handles the data science platform will be joining their new colleagues at the Google Cloud division, where their coveted skills will be put to use for the company’s machine learning training and deployment services efforts, in addition to dataset storage and query technologies.

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“Artificial intelligence is playing an increasingly essential role in the enterprise, however, more and more businesses find themselves struggling to keep up,” said Google Cloud’s AI and Machine Learning division chief scientist Fei-Fei Li in the announcement. “One of our most important goals is to make machine learning a transformational tool for organizations of any size, industry or sophistication.”

Kaggle is home to the world’s biggest consortium of data science experts and enthusiasts across the world, with a staggering 800,000+ members that share and perform machine learning and data analytics day in and day out. Founded in 2010, the platform allows companies and individuals to host contests so the community can try to interpret and analyze data, and then create the best models that can be utilized through machine learning.

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Kaggle tries to resolve anything and everything through the utilization of data and machine learning, from simple classification of plants using datasets to diagnosing heart diseases by interpreting all the data provided to them. Their datasets platform allows scientists to analyze open data amongst themselves, discuss the codes and add verifiable information to the dataset that can be further used and analyzed by others.

Google, unlike other companies that perform acquisitions of smaller platforms, will not disband Kaggle’s team and, according to Kaggle CEO Anthony Goldbloom, will stay as its own entity under the Google Umbrella.

“During my keynote talk at Next ‘17, I emphasized the importance of democratizing AI,” added Li in a separate post. “We must lower the barriers of entry to AI and make it available to the largest community of developers, users and enterprises, so they can apply it to their own unique needs. With Kaggle joining the Google Cloud team, we can accelerate this mission.”

Data analytics is getting a significant push forward from different tech companies this year, specifically from the top dogs of the industry. Earlier this week, IBM and Salesforce have announced a partnership to combine efforts in improving the data analytics and machine learning capabilities of each company’s artificial intelligence, IBM’s Watson AI and Salesforce’s Einstein AI respectively.