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Toronto, Jun 27 (Canadian-Media): Recently Adobe Systems Inc., the latest foreign technology and the Silicon Valley software giant is planning to open an artificial intelligence (AI) lab in Canada, media reports said.
Adobe Systems Inc. Image credit: Facebook page
Adobe Systems Inc., best known for document-creation products Photoshop and Acrobat, according to a job posting on LinkedIn, was keen to “establish a cutting-edge research lab in artificial intelligence, that will both push the state-of-the-art and have a profound impact on Adobe’s products,” in a Toronto-based AI lab.
Fast Company recently named Adobe one of the 10 most innovative companies in the AI space.
AI's breakthroughs in the field this decade led to wider adoption by a range of sectors.
Adobe would follow foreign giants NVIDIA Corp., Facebook Inc., Microsoft Corp., Uber Technologies, Google Parent Alphabet Inc., Thales SA and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., Fujitsu Ltd. and LG Electronics Inc., who have opened AI labs in Toronto, Montreal, Edmonton or Vancouver or disclosed plans to do so.
Meanwhile, National Bank of Canada is also looking to ramp up its AI practice.
The Montreal-based bank last year “realized we had a fundamental opportunity for our organization” to tap into the city’s teeming AI talent pool, said David Furlong, the bank’s senior vice-president of AI, venture capital and blockchain.
Recently math and statistics professor Manuel Morales and its chief scientist from the University of Montreal were hired by the bank.
The bank is also staffing eight teams comprised of business leads and AI scientists that will be embedded in all business units from wealth management to human resources to solve real world problems for thier clients and staff.
Significant investments have been made in AI talent in Canada by several other large Canadian corporations including Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto-Dominion Bank, Manulife Financial Corp. and Thomson Reuters Corp. in the past two years.
This week, Manulife said it was re-entering the whole- life insurance business and using AI to speed up the process for customers to buy life insurance by drawing on decades of internal underwriting data.
Using its technology, retailers can improve sales forecasting to help optimize operations, and advertisers can automate the process of tagging and searching for images from vast digital libraries and train machines to crop or manipulate them to cut time spent producing content.
“AI is playing a critical role across Adobe’s solutions and is one of the company’s biggest bets,” an Adobe spokeswoman said.
Vivek Goel, vice-president of research and innovation with University of Toronto, said foreign companies are now looking beyond just establishing AI research labs in Toronto and considering moving core development operations here to take advantage of the local talent.
“From my perspective it’s very positive. It’s creating opportunities for our folks to develop careers in Canada, where traditionally these individuals may have gone abroad,” he said.
Three research pioneers, Geoffrey Hinton at University of Toronto, Yoshua Bengio at University of Montreal and Rich Sutton at University of Alberta-- who left opportunities in the U.S. to move to Canada, preferring the political and/or research-funding climate here -- were responsible for Canada's earning its place on the global AI map.