Samsung Electronics has hired AI bigwigs, Sebastian Seung (52, Korean name: Seung Hyun-joon), professor of Princeton University, and Daniel Lee (49, Korean name: Lee Dong-ryul), professor of Pennsylvania University.
Professor Seung is one of the best scholars in the field of AI based on neuropsychology. He earned a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from Harvard University and worked as a professor of physics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He has been the leader of the global study of Connectome, a brain map of the interconnected structure of 1 trillion nerve cells that make up the brain and the principle of synaptic activity.
Professor Lee, who also recently joined Samsung, is a scholar in AI robotics. After majoring in physics at Harvard University and MIT, he worked as a researcher at Bell Labs and then as a professor of electrical engineering at Pennsylvania University since 2001. He is the chairman of the Neural Information Processing System (NIPS) and the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), and a researcher in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
Samsung Electronics granted the two professors “the top researcher scientist” title, which was newly created to attract and retain top-notch talent, and provides them with exceptional treatment. While appointing the two professors as vice presidents, Samsung has allowed them to maintain their academic positions.
Samsung Electronics expects the two professors, who specialize in different areas of AI, to achieve innovative research results through collaboration. They have already undertaken collaborative research projects.
An official of Samsung Electronics said, "The two professors studied together at Harvard University and MIT and worked at Bell Labs together. They have devoted themselves to AI research and now they are expected to make a big contribution to AI research at Samsung Electronics.”
Samsung Electronics has established Samsung Research, a leading research organization in the device sector, and has established a global AI research center in five countries including Korea, the US, the UK, Canada, and Russia. The company has been focusing on talented people who will run these centers.
At the end of last year, Samsung recruited Dr. Larry Heck, a machine learning expert who led the development of voice recognition personal assistant Cortana in Microsoft.
Samsung Electronics plans to increase the total number of researchers to more than 1,000, including 600 from Korea and 400 from overseas by 2020, in order to boost AI capacity.