Twitter buys Magic Pony -- wait, what?

The blue bird acquires machine-learning startup. No, you can’t have a pony.

Magic Pony Technology Twitter
Credit: RyantheBrony and Commander Hurricane

Twitter buys another machine-learning startup. The ridiculously-named Magic Pony Technology is set to help Twitter to so something with video.

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Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment. Not to mention: 14 months ago

What’s the craic? Tom Giles takes it quickly—Twitter Buys Magic Pony:

Twitter Inc. is boosting its expertise in machine learning [by] buying Magic Pony Technology, a London-based company. ... Twitter, beset by stagnating user growth, is under pressure to add tools that make [it] more alluring to a broader audience.

Is that really the name of the company? Ingrid Lunden confirms—Twitter pays up to $150M:

That is really the name. [It] has developed techniques of using neural provide expanded data for images. ... Twitter is paying $150 million [including] retention bonuses. ... Magic Pony Technology...enhance[s] visuals with information that may not be in the picture itself...recreated from composites of pictures that are similar.

This is the second machine-learning startup Twitter has acquired in the UK, after Whetlab last year. ... Twitter is gaining a very strong team working in areas where [it] has yet to lay out any intentions.

But why? Twitter co-founder @Jack Dorsey speaks of Increasing our Investment in Machine Learning:

Machine learning is increasingly at the core of everything we make it easier to create, share, and discover the very best content. ... Magic Pony...has developed novel machine learning techniques for visual processing. [It] opens up a whole lot of exciting creative possibilities.

Welcome to the flock, Magic Pony!

Clear as mud. Natalie Gagliordi tries to unpick it, with Twitter buys machine learning firm:

The acquisition will add new cognitive muscle to Twitter's video capabilities. ... Twitter has bought multiple machine learning startups over the last two years. [They’ll] bolster Twitter's ability to meld predictive and deep learning technologies into the...platform.

Let's sharpen the story. James Vincent tries reading what the company’s said in the past—a machine learning startup that can sharpen real-time video:

Earlier this year, the company [showed] how its algorithms can essentially upgrade the resolution of low-res videos. ... So: less blurry videos on Twitter. ... Sounds good.

Who else is making money out of this deal? Robin Wauters bathes in the story: [You're fired -Ed.]

Entrepreneur First, the pre-idea startup accelerator that helped Magic Pony come to it's is the largest exit of any European accelerator ever to date.

And Finally…

But 14 months ago, Magic Pony was all about amazing video compression

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