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Jeff Chiu / AP

Gary Marcus, a research scientist who joined Uber four months ago as director of its AI labs, is leaving the company, according to sources. Uber bought Marcus' startup, Geometric Intelligence, in December, using its 15 employees to form a new artificial intelligence unit.

Marcus joins a long list of recent exits from the troubled company, with Uber's most future-leaning efforts especially hard hit. Other notable departures include product head Ed Baker, self-driving car engineer Raffi Krikorian and famous car hacker Charlie Miller, who is joining Chinese rival Didi.

Why it matters: Today's Uber is all about matching riders and drivers, but the company's future efforts in self-driving cars and machine intelligence require a type of talent in short supply. Uber, already facing a lawsuit from Google and its ongoing harassment investigation, may have a tough time replacing those who leave.

Update: Marcus has confirmed the move in a Facebook post, saying is moving back to New York and will be a "senior advisor" to Uber.

Go deeper

"Neanderthal thinking": Biden slams states lifting mask mandates

States that are relaxing coronavirus restrictions are making "a big mistake," President Biden told reporters on Wednesday, adding: "The last thing we need is Neanderthal thinking."

Driving the news: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said Wednesday he will end all coronavirus restrictions via executive order, although some businesses are continuing to ask patrons to wear face masks. Mississippi is lifting its mask mandate for all counties Wednesday, per Gov. Tate Reeves (R).

Cuomo: "I am not going to resign"

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo apologized Wednesday for acting in a way that made women feel "uncomfortable," but insisted that he has "never touched anyone inappropriately" and said he will not resign.

Driving the news: Cuomo reiterated in his first public appearance since sexual harassment allegations surfaced that he will fully cooperate with a team of independent investigators appointed by New York Attorney General Letitia James, but suggested that demands for his resignation from were simply "politics."

Facebook to lift political ad ban imposed after November election

Photo Illustration by Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Facebook will finally allow advertisers to resume running political and social issue ads in the U.S. on Thursday, according to a company update.

The big picture: Facebook and rival Google instituted political ad bans to slow the spread of misinformation and curb confusion around the presidential election and its aftermath.