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Google has acquired DeepMind, a London startup that specializes in artificial intelligence. (Torsten Silz / Associated Press / October 8, 2006)

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Google has purchased DeepMind, a British artificial intelligence company whose goal reportedly is to make computers think like humans.

The Mountain View, Calif., tech giant confirmed the deal with technology blog Recode, formerly known as AllThingsD, which first reported on the deal.

The British Independent said Google is paying more than $500 million. The Independent also said Google beat out Facebook for the acquisition of the London startup.

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With the deal, Google appears more interested in talent than anything else. DeepMind has recruited a number of experts in artificial intelligence, and one of its co-founders is Demis Hassabis, a neuroscientist, computer game designer and former chess prodigy.

The DeepMind purchase is one of several recent notable acquisitions by Google.

Earlier this month, the company paid $3.2 billion to acquire Nest, a company that specializes in smart products for the home. And last year, Google acquired several startups that focus on robotics, including Boston Dynamics -- a company whose robots are famous thanks to their YouTube videos.

The acquisitions are raising the prospects that Google may be looking to develop artificially intelligent robots for the home.

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