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Why Alibaba is betting big on AI chips and quantum computing

Meet the man behind Alibaba’s gamble on emerging tech.
by Yiting Sun

During the opening ceremony of Alibaba’s 2018 computing conference last week, Simon Hu, president of Alibaba Cloud, invited the MC to taste some tea on the stage—but, first, to distinguish between tea roasted by hand and by machine.

While the MC stared helplessly at two saucers filled with nearly identical-looking tea leaves, Hu pulled out his smartphone. He took a photo of each saucer and fed them into an app developed by Tmall, one of Alibaba’s e-commerce platforms.


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