Google calls off Project Maven deal -- after emails show it hoped to earn ...

Google is ending its controversial 'Project Maven' deal with the Pentagon. 

Google Cloud boss Diane Greene informed employees of the decision during an internal meeting on Friday morning, Gizmodo reported, citing sources close to the situation. 

The contract, in which the Pentagon used Google's artificial intelligence technologies to analyze drone footage, was set to expire in 2019. 

Greene told employees that it won't be renewing the contract once it expires.

Scroll down for video 

Google is calling off its controversial 'Project Maven' program with the Pentagon. The contract is set to expire in 2019 and Google Cloud CEO Diane Greene said they won't renew it past then

Google is calling off its controversial 'Project Maven' program with the Pentagon. The contract is set to expire in 2019 and Google Cloud CEO Diane Greene said they won't renew it past then

The decision comes after Google faced months of backlash over its involvement in the program, with nearly a dozen employees resigning from the company as a result of the move. 

And more than 3,000 employees penned a letter addressed to Google, saying it shouldn't be 'in the business of war'. 

During the meeting on Friday, Greene told employees that the backlash has been 'terrible for the company,' according to Gizmodo.

At one time, Google was interested in pursuing partnerships with the military, Greene said. 

But it has since adjusted its stance, and now plans to release updated ethical principles about its use of AI next week, Gizmodo noted.  

It was revealed in March that Google is engaging in a mysterious drone program with the Pentagon, with participation from Nvidia and other tech firms and academic institutions. Work on the project began last April.  

Google has been dealing with significant backlash since it was revealed that the firm is participating in a military drone project. Thousands of employees penned a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai (pictured) urging the company to pull out of the contract

Google has been dealing with significant backlash since it was revealed that the firm is participating in a military drone project. Thousands of employees penned a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai (pictured) urging the company to pull out of the contract

Pictured is footage of a truck from the view of a camera on a MQ-9 Reaper, which is an unmanned aerial vehicle used by the military for surveillance purposes in war zones

Pictured is footage of a truck from the view of a camera on a MQ-9 Reaper, which is an unmanned aerial vehicle used by the military for surveillance purposes in war zones

At the time, Google said its TensorFlow software would be used for 'non-offensive uses only,' namely assisting in object recognition on unclassified data. 

Greene had recently assured employees that the technology won't 'operate or fly drones' and 'will not be used to launch weapons'. 

Google executives also said the contract was of little value. 

However, leaked emails showed that Google's business development unit hoped to make as much as $250 million per year from the military drone project, according to documents obtained by the Intercept. 

In the emails, Dr. Fei-Fei Li, head scientist at Google Cloud, wrote that she was worried about how the public would perceive the project. 

'This is red meat to the media to find all ways to damage Google,' Li wrote, according to the Intercept. 

'You probably heard Elon Musk and his comment about AI causing WW3'

'I don’t know what would happen if the media starts picking up a theme that Google is secretly building AI weapons or AI technologies to enable weapons for the Defense industry,' she continued.

Li added that the firm should take care to protect the 'very positive images' presented by Google Cloud about 'Democratizing AI' and 'Humanistic AI'.

Leaked emails showed that Google's business development unit hoped to make as much as $250 million per year from the military drone project, according to the Intercept

Leaked emails showed that Google's business development unit hoped to make as much as $250 million per year from the military drone project, according to the Intercept

Google hoped to build a 'Google-earth-like' surveillance system that enabled military analysts to 'click on a building and see everything associated with it'

Google hoped to build a 'Google-earth-like' surveillance system that enabled military analysts to 'click on a building and see everything associated with it'

In a set of additional emails obtained by Gizmodo, executives describe how Google had wide-ranging plans for the AI drones.   

The firm hoped to build a 'Google-earth-like' surveillance system that enabled military analysts to 'click on a building and see everything

read more from dailymail.....

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks

PREV Technology Netflix pays more for TV shows up front, but keeps more upside on big hits, ...
NEXT T-Mobile promises to make customer service less painful with Team of Experts