Big Numenta news today. Numenta's website indicates that Dileep George is on an extended "personal" leave of absence. He, along with Jeff Hawkins, co-founded Numenta back in 2005. It is hard to overstate his importance to the company over the years. He was the guy who read "On Intelligence" and figured out how to turn Hawkins' neuroscience theories into a mathematical expression that could be created in software. I went to George's website, and he says there that he left Numenta so that he could form a new company focused more on applications of the HTM technology.
I am not sure what to think about this. On the one hand, this could signal that George simply thinks that the technology is finally in a state that serious commercial applications can now be created with HTM. Numenta has always been more about the basics of the theory than applications, so it might be that Dileep just wants to hurry along the commercialization process. This could be a signal that the new algorithms really are going to be that big of a step forward for AI.
Hopefully this move doesn't mean some type of rift has opened between George and the company. Numenta could really use his talents down the road. Given George's stated reason for leaving, and given that it is called a "leave of absence" rather than outright resignation, I am inclined to go with the more optimistic interpretation.