Shane Legg

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Shane Legg CBE is a machine learning researcher and cofounder of DeepMind Technologies, acquired by Google in 2014.[1][2]

Shane Legg
Alma mater
Known forDeepMind Technologies
Scientific career
ThesisMachine Super Intelligence (2008)
Doctoral advisorMarcus Hutter

Early life[edit]

Legg attended Rotorua Lakes High School in Rotorua, on New Zealand's North Island.[3] He completed his undergraduate studies at Waikato University. He obtained his MSc degree with the thesis "Solomonoff Induction"[4] with Cristian S. Calude at the University of Auckland. He received his PhD degree from University of Lugano working on theoretical models of super intelligent machines (AIXI) with Prof. Marcus Hutter. His doctoral thesis entitled "Machine Super Intelligence"[5] was completed in 2008. He was awarded the $10,000 Canadian Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence prize.[6]


Legg's main research interests are in artificial intelligence, both theory and practice. In particular, he is interested in measures of intelligence for machines, neural networks, artificial evolution, reinforcement learning and the theory of learning. He has worked on these topics in both commercial and academic environments.

DeepMind Technologies[edit]

In 2010, Legg cofounded the start-up DeepMind Technologies along with Demis Hassabis and Mustafa Suleyman.[1][2] Hassabis and Legg first met at UCL's Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit,[7] where Legg was a research associate.

Legg was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2019 Birthday Honours for services to the science and technology sector and to investment.[8]


  1. ^ a b "Google Buys U.K. Artificial Intelligence Company DeepMind". Bloomberg. 27 January 2014. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  2. ^ a b "Google makes £400m move in quest for artificial intelligence". Financial Times. 27 January 2014. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
  3. ^ Ryan, Holly (10 January 2016). "Soaring Kiwis: Programmed early for success". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 15 January 2016.
  4. ^ Shane Legg, Solomonoff Induction, Dept. of Mathematics, University of Auckland, March 1997
  5. ^ Machine Super Intelligence
  6. ^ "Q&A with Shane Legg on risks from AI". LessWrong. Retrieved 9 January 2016.
  7. ^ Gibbs, Samuel (28 January 2014). "Demis Hassabis: 15 facts about the DeepMind Technologies founder". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  8. ^ "No. 62666". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 June 2019. p. B9.