Sponsored By

Apple Quietly Acquires Machine Learning Specialist Lattice DarkApple Quietly Acquires Machine Learning Specialist Lattice Dark

Apple's latest acquisition, Lattice Dark, is using machine learning and AI to unlock 'dark' data.

Scott Ferguson

May 15, 2017

2 Min Read
Apple Quietly Acquires Machine Learning Specialist Lattice Dark

Apple is known for its quiet but extremely strategic acquisitions, and its latest deal is no different. Over the weekend, news broke that the iPhone maker bought a company called Lattice Dark, which specializes in "dark" data.

The deal between Apple and Lattice Dark appears to have been finalized several months ago, although rumors of an acquisition have floated around over the last several weeks. Finally, on May 13, an Apple spokesman confirmed the agreement to Fortune, without offering much in the way of details.

The only thing more mysterious than Apple's acquisition strategy is Lattice Dark itself.

The company was founded in 2015 and was developing commercial applications that grew out of DeepDive, a framework for statistical inference, which started as a Stanford research project. Here's how Lattice Dark describes itself on its LinkedIn page: "Our platform reads unstructured media and converts it into structured data that can be used by traditional data analysis tools. We use advanced machine learning techniques, coupled with a rigorous engineering approach, to outperform human readers in many fields including scientific, insurance and government applications." Lattice Dark was founded by Chris Re, who worked on the DeepDive project at Stanford and has received a MacArthur Genius Award, along with Mike Cafarella, a co-creator of Hadoop. Figure 1: (Source: Unsplash via Pixabay) (Source: Unsplash via Pixabay) Before the acquisition, Lattice Dark received about $20 million in funding, including an investment from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency or DARPA. The company's technology has been used to fight human trafficking, according to LinkedIn. Apple reportedly paid $200 million for Lattice Dark, according to CrunchBase. The company has about 30 employees. What's not clear is what Apple would use Lattice Dark's technology for in its portfolio. M&A activity is turning the cloud upside down. Find out what you need to know in our special report: Mergers, Acquisitions & IPOs Are Rocking the Cloud. From what little information is available, it seems the company is looking to gather and organize dark data from the web and structure it though machine learning and artificial intelligence, as well as making this process more automated. If Apple could organize this unstructured, dark data, and then process it through AI and machine learning, it could help build out the capabilities of its Siri assistant by making its recommendations more intuitive. Apple has acquired other AI and machine learning companies over the past several years, including Turi and Vocal IQ. Related posts: Cisco Buying AI Specialist MindMeld for $125M AI Is Coming for Highly Skilled Jobs, Too Oracle Adds AI to Its Customer Experience Cloud — Scott Ferguson, Editor, Enterprise Cloud News. Follow him on Twitter @sferguson_LR.

About the Author(s)

Scott Ferguson

Managing Editor, Light Reading

Prior to joining Enterprise Cloud News, he was director of audience development for InformationWeek, where he oversaw the publications' newsletters, editorial content, email and content marketing initiatives. Before that, he served as editor-in-chief of eWEEK, overseeing both the website and the print edition of the magazine. For more than a decade, Scott has covered the IT enterprise industry with a focus on cloud computing, datacenter technologies, virtualization, IoT and microprocessors, as well as PCs and mobile. Before covering tech, he was a staff writer at the Asbury Park Press and the Herald News, both located in New Jersey. Scott has degrees in journalism and history from William Paterson University, and is based in Greater New York.

Subscribe and receive the latest news from the industry.
Join 62,000+ members. Yes it's completely free.

You May Also Like