Machine learning startup Weights & Biases raises $15M

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Weights & Biases, a startup building development tools for machine learning, has raised $15 million in its second round of funding.

The company was started by CrowdFlower founders Lukas Biewald and Chris van Pelt, along with former Google engineer Shawn Lewis. (Under its new name Figure Eight, CrowdFlower was acquired by Appen for up to $300 million in March.)

When Weights & Biases launched last year, Biewald (who I’ve known since college) said he wanted to create the tools needed to “build and deploy great deep learning models.” Its initial product allows companies to monitor those models as they develop and train them.

“When people build machine learning models they need to track everything that happens — the code that went into the model, the hyperparameters that go into the model and then basically how well the model does,” Biewald told me this week. “You add a couple lines of code to your … training code and then every time your model runs, it reports what happens to the server.”

Customers include OpenAI, Github, Qualcomm and Toyota Research Institute, as well as research institutions like Stanford and Columbia. The new round — led by Coatue Management, with participation

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