UNION CITY, CA — August 21, 2012 — Vicarious, an artificial intelligence research company, today announced a $15M Series A round of financing led by Good Ventures LLC, a for-profit investment firm founded by Facebook and Asana co-founder Dustin Moskovitz that will donate all of its earnings to the Good Ventures Foundation. Also participating in the round are veteran institutional investors Founders Fund and Open Field Capital, as well as Vicarious angel investors Steve Brown and Zarco Investment Group.
Vicarious is developing machine learning software based on the computational principles of the human brain. Since its launch in February 2011, the company has developed a visual perception system that interprets the contents of photographs and videos in a manner similar to humans. Powering this technology is Vicarious’ key innovation: a new computational paradigm called the Recursive Cortical Network™. The research at Vicarious is expected to have broad implications for robotics, medical image analysis, image and video search, and many other fields.
“The technology that Vicarious is developing has the potential to improve all lives and revolutionize every industry. Even the intermediate technologies Vicarious creates en route to artificial intelligence will be immensely impactful,” said Mr. Moskovitz, who will be joining Vicarious’s board of directors. “It’s essential that the right people bring this technology into the world,” added Cari Tuna, president of the Good Ventures Foundation and Mr. Moskovitz’s fiancée. “Scott and Dileep share our mission to help humanity thrive, and we’re deeply grateful for their efforts.”
“Building machine intelligence is one of the most important and challenging problems humanity has ever faced. Advancements in neuroscience, probabilistic models, and computing power are enabling new strategies for AI research,” said Vicarious co-founder Dr. Dileep George. “We are honored to pursue this long term goal with the support of investors who share our deepest values,” added Vicarious co-founder D. Scott Phoenix.
“Vicarious is bringing us closer to a future where computers perceive, imagine, and reason just like humans. We are proud to support Vicarious in its quest,” said Peter Thiel, partner at Founders Fund.
Vicarious FPC Inc is an artificial intelligence company that uses the computational principles of the brain to build software that can think and learn like a human. The company was founded in 2010 by D. Scott Phoenix and Dr. Dileep George. Before co-founding Vicarious, Mr. Phoenix was Entrepreneur in Residence at Founders Fund and CEO of Frogmetrics, a touchscreen analytics company he co-founded through the Y Combinator incubator program. Previously Dr. George was Chief Technology Officer at Numeta, a company he co-founded with Jeff Hawkins and Donna Dubinsky (PALM, HAND) while completing his PhD at Stanford University. For more information about Vicarious, please visit www.vicarious.com.
About Good Ventures
Good Ventures LLC is a for-profit investment firm founded by Facebook and Asana co-founder Dustin Moskovitz that will donate all of its earnings to the Good Ventures Foundation. The Good Ventures Foundation is a philanthropic foundation created by Mr. Moskovitz and led by his fiancée Cari Tuna. Its mission is to help humanity thrive. For more information about the foundation’s activities, please visit www.goodventures.org.