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Twitter is joining Google and Facebook in the artificial intelligence arms race

jack dorsey
jack dorsey

( Bill Pugliano/Getty Images) Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey

The changing of the guard in Twitter's executive suite hasn't put a halt to the company's M&A activity.

On Wednesday, Twitter announced that it has acquired Whetlab, a startup focused on machine learning technology.

The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Whetlab said it will shut down its service effective July 15.

It's not immediately clear why Twitter decided to acquire Whetlab. But its machine learning technology potentially has a lot of use-cases for Twitter, like in surfacing more relevant tweets for the users or targeting better ads.

The deal is Twitter's second acquisition of a machine learning tech company, following the acquisition of Madbits last July. The deals come as Internet rivals Google and Facebook are increasingly investing in artificial intelligence technology.

Whetlab's small team will also join Twitter following the acquisition. Its small team is comprised of a bunch of PhDs, including Ryan Adams, assistant professor of computer science at Harvard University, and Hugo Larochelle, an assistant professor at the Université de Sherbrooke.

Here's what Whetlab wrote about the acquisition on its website:

"Over the past year, we have created a technology to make machine learning better and faster for companies, automatically. Twitter is the platform for open communication on the internet and we believe that Whetlab’s technology can have a great impact by accelerating Twitter’s internal machine learning efforts."

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