AI Lab Mission Develop hard AI technologies that let us significantly impact hundreds of millions of users. Examples of things we might decide to work on: Speech recognition; speech synthesis. Could become ubiquitous UI for mobile devices; enable hands free interfaces for cars. Language understanding, toward better web search or machine translation. This has a significant impact on a huge number of users. Computer vision, toward selfdriving cars, or product search. This is assuming we think the number of users we can influence is >100 million. Things we won’t do: Projects that might have a huge impact on a lot of users, but whose foundation is not hard AI technology. For example, we are not interested in building the next Pinterest or the next Snapchat, even though these are great companies. Projects that might have a deep impact but only on a small number of people. For example, a system to help bird watchers (or carpenters, truck drivers, golfers, …) function better. This is a fine cause, but we aspire to help a greater portion of humanity. Any project that, even if it were successful, we don’t think will have a significant impact on >100 million users.
Culture Mission orientation We orient our activities toward our mission. When in doubt, we favor decisions that help us execute our mission.
Team orientation We work to maximize the team’s performance toward the AI mission. We judge individual achievement by their contribution to the team’s performance of its mission.
Care for teammates We respect and care for each other, and go out of our way to help and support one another. We recognize that a balanced life is important for individuals, and support our teammates having a healthy work/life balance.
Think big, but think clearly We boldly go after our mission. However, we do not engage in bravado. We’re cleareyed about the risks, hard work, and steps needed to achieve project success. We’re open minded to where a project may take us and are unafraid to make significant course changes.
Act with urgency Research is a learning process. By acting quickly, we learn and therefore succeed more quickly. We have a strong bias to action; we get stuff done. The only exception is when our actions risk irreparable damage to the Company or team (such as loss of user data, significant negative PR, significant waste of funds). In such cases, we are more fastidious and precise.
Continual learning Both as individuals and as a team, we are curious and want to keep learning. We seek efficient ways to help ourselves and our teammates gain missionrelevant skills and knowledge. We value people that help levelup our team in missionrelevant ways
Context, not control We empower those around us by giving them great context, and trust them to execute in their areas of responsibility. We expect great judgment of ourselves and of our teammates. We're less concerned about chain of command and more concerned about success for the team. Thus we minimize approval processes and restrictive policies, and instead trust teammates to do what’s best for the team and mission.
Communicate transparently and courageously We seek great levels of internal transparency. We seek and value the truththe best idea wins, regardless of its originator. We speak caringly but courageously, and are unafraid to voice our thoughts. We feel free to question anything, and are unafraid of discussions and debate. We regularly give feedback to, and in turn seek and appreciate feedback from, teammates. We also value and respect each others’ input.