Principal Scientist and Team Lead, DeepMind; and Deep Learning Indaba advisory board member

I am a principal scientist and lead the Machine Learning team at DeepMind. I was born in Zimbabwe and did my undergraduate studies and MSc at the University of the Witwatersrand, and a PhD at Trinity College, Cambridge. From 2001, he was a Professor at the University of British Columbia, before joining the Department of Computer Science at the University of Oxford in 2013. I was also a co-founder in 2014 of Dark Blue Labs.

For me research is like stone sculpture. You find a stone in the quarry after a long search. As you begin to chisel, you discover new patterns, you see the possibilities, you see things that were never seen before. Then you continue chiseling and, disaster! something breaks. So you have to be patient, and continue looking till something else comes to your mind. Always thinking, never losing focus. Eventually something beautiful emerges, and if it doesn’t emerge, do not despair because enjoying the process is part of the deal. Machine learning is about discovery, it is about a search for AI, but also a personal search. It is also about building products to improve the lives of others, and by others I don’t mean only people.