At Lux Capital we frequently talk about directional arrows of technological progress — technological trends that may be hard to time but are inevitable. There is a clear trend in machine learning and artificial intelligence, that is, machines are making more decisions on behalf of consumers and enterprises. The first wave was web recommendation engines, such as what movies to watch on Netflix, or what Ads and posts to show you on newsfeed. The next wave is happening today around automation; e.g. algorithms having a direct impact on enterprise P&L’s such as loan underwriting, and machines making life and death decisions on behalf of humans in the case of autonomous vehicles.
With each new phase, it becomes more important that algorithms making important decisions can be held accountable, and there is a way to help explain their otherwise black box nature. Turns out nearly every organization from F500 corporations to technology startups are grasping with similar issues on algorithm fairness, accountability, and explainability. Testing and qualifying inputs and outputs, as well as biases that get built into these models is useful across various stakeholders: data scientists, compliance and risk managers, or business decision makers.
Fiddler Labs was founded in 2018 by Krishna Gade and Amit Paka to solve this problem; to help companies solve the business risks related to deploying AI in product by releasing their “Explainable AI Engine”. Both had first hand experience with these problems when Krishna was on the newsfeed team at Facebook and Amit was at Samsung. Since then, the team has expanded to bring on exceptional talent from Google Brain, Lyft, Microsoft, Nutanix, Stanford, Georgia Tech and many more organizations.
The Fiddler Explainable AI Engine enables companies to better understand why their machine learning and AI models make the decisions they do. By helping analyze, validate, and monitor AI models at scale, Fiddler helps accelerate the adoption of AI in enterprises in a trustworthy, transparent, and responsible way.
We are excited that Lux Capital is co-leading Fiddler Labs $10.2M Series A with our friends at Lightspeed Ventures, and with participation from Haystack Ventures, Bloomberg Beta, and an incredible group of angels and advisors. As a part of this financing, we are also joining their Board of Directors to help build a world class enterprise software company.
We believe the opportunity for Fiddler is very large, and timely. Just as companies like AppDynamics and New Relic let enterprises understand and optimize the performance of applications, we believe there will be a new generation of enterprise software, but now with a focus on understanding and optimizing machine learning/artificial intelligence applications.