Facebook relies on a former military contractor for the metaverse
by Chiara Rossi
Facebook will build its “metaverse” with technology from AI.Reverie, which has a long history of US military and defense contracts
To build its metaverse, Facebook will rely on artificial intelligence technology from an American company with a long history of military contracts.
Last August, the company (renamed Meta) quietly acquired the synthetic data start-up AI.Reveries, as reported by Venturebeat.
After that the group founded by Mark Zuckerberg incorporated it into its Reality Labs division which is part of the metaverse effort. That is the virtual reality project shared on the internet.
This technology requires large amounts of data to train the artificial intelligence algorithms involved. Rather than using data collected from the real world, it focuses on “synthetic data”, such as those provided by companies such as.
Earlier this year, the start-up said it had licensed its synthetic data generation platform to defense, retail, industry and agriculture customers, reports the Financial Times. Additionally, AI.Reveries claims to have tripled its customer base in 2020.
After Meta, companies such as Microsoft, Nike and Nvidia are also experimenting with “multiverse” applications, as well as the Chinese Baidu, Tencent and ByteDance. Yet the technology is only in its infancy.
All the details.
WHAT THE AI.REVERIES STARTUP DOES
Founded in 2017, the New York City-based start-up creates synthetic data to train machine learning models.
Former AI.Reverie CEO Daeil Kim, now technical manager at Meta, described the company as creating a “virtually endless supply of annotated images and videos to accelerate computer vision and machine learning by reducing the cost of training “.
THE CONTRACT (THEN TERMINATED) WITH THE US AIR FORCE
As the FT recalls, in January AI.Reverie signed a three-year contract with the US Air Force worth $ 950 million. This involved providing services to develop a battle management system and improve its command and control systems using artificial intelligence.
The contract was terminated in August before the acquisition of Meta.
ALL THE MILITARY CONTRACTS OF THE STARTUP ACQUIRED BY FACEBOOK FOR THE METAVERSE
In May last year, the start-up received a contract to improve intelligence gathering for the U.S. Department of Defense, including the Army and Air Force, and in July 2020, it received a contract from the USAF to improve navigational skills in difficult terrain using synthetic training data.
According to AI. Reverie, its AI product would support the 7th Bomb Wing, part of a major US Air Force command unit that conducts nuclear deterrence and global strike operations.
The company also said Meta will not be involved in any future military AI or defense development.