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Tesla hires machine learning expert as new VP of Engineering working on Autopilot – among other things

Tesla had a few high-profile departures lately, but it is now making a high-profile hire of its own as it poaches Stuart Bowers, a former machine learning engineer at Facebook who most recently was VP of engineering for monetization at Snap.

Bowers will now become VP of Engineering at Tesla and work on Autopilot.

The hire comes a month after Jim Keller left Tesla.

Keller had several responsibilities at Tesla, but he most recently was VP of Autopilot.

Bowers’ hire by Tesla was first reported by Cheddar and Tesla later confirmed it.

A Tesla spokesperson told Electrek that he will be working on Autopilot and “a number of things.”

During Tesla’s latest earnings call, CEO Elon Musk said that the automaker wouldn’t be trying to find a replacement for Keller’s role and instead, his responsibilities would be split amongst current staff, including Keller’s longtime colleague Pete Bannon.

At Snap, Bowers was most recently working on monetization. The company has been in trouble recently as its stock price was cut in half from its all-time-high earlier this year.

Prior to working for Snap, Bowers worked at Microsoft and Facebook for a decade.

He has a background in machine learning and he holds several patents for related technologies.

Tesla has been increasingly using machine learning in its Autopilot program to manage the large amount of data created by its fleet of vehicles and the Autopilot sensor suite on those vehicles.

Last year, Tesla hired AI expert Andrej Karpathy to oversee computer vision and AI at the automaker.

Karpathy led a rewrite of Tesla’s Autopilot neural net over the last few months, which led to a much-improved version of Autopilot 2.0 released earlier this year.

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