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Former longtime Apple engineering leader Chris Lattner is heading to Google to work on AI

Lattner made a brief stop at Tesla, which he left in June.

Chris Lattner
Chris Lattner

Google has recruited one of Apple’s top engineers — albeit not directly from its Silicon Valley rival.

Chris Lattner, who worked at Apple for more than 11 years — notably as the creator of the Swift programming language and many other developer tools — announced today that he is joining Google Brain, an artificial intelligence-focused research project.

“AI can't democratize itself (yet?) so I'll help make it more accessible to everyone!” Lattner tweeted.

Lattner left Apple this past January for a big role at Tesla, leading the electric car company’s self-driving team. But he left Tesla in June. “We built a lot of great things, but Tesla wasn't the right fit for me,” he says on his website.

Artificial intelligence is one of the hottest areas of software development, and most big Silicon Valley companies — including Apple, Google, Facebook and others — are investing heavily in AI research and product development.

Btw: Tesla CEO Elon Musk has warned about AI safety — “Vastly more risk than North Korea” — and said last year at our Code Conference that there’s only one company whose AI he’s scared of. Perhaps one whose name begins with G?

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