Heroes of Deep Learning: Yann LeCun


“If you want to get into [AI], make yourself useful. So make a contribution to an open-source project for example, or make an implementation of some standard algorithm that you couldn’t find the code of online but would like to make available to other people.”

As the VP and Chief AI Scientist at Facebook, Yann LeCun leads the company’s AI research group (FAIR). He is also a Professor of Computer Science at New York University. Well known for his work on Convolutional Neural Networks, LeCun received his PhD from the Pierre and Marie Curie University in France, then worked as a postdoctoral research associate under Geoffrey Hinton.

Andrew and LeCun chat about his foundational work on Convolutional Neural Networks, his role at FAIR, and his advice for getting started in AI.

Here’s what you’ll learn in the interview:

  • 00:15: How LeCun started working with neural networks
  • 7:45: LeCun’s early research at AT&T Bell Labs that introduced LeNet, a foundational concept for Convolutional Neural Networks
  • 16:06: why LeCun kept working on neural networks even when they were unpopular
  • 17:35: How LeCun’s work greatly influenced the field of computer vision
  • 21:25: LeCun’s thoughts on how corporate research should be led
  • 25:33: LeCun’s advice for breaking into AI

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