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9 things to know as Elon Musk’s new business xAI prepares to compete with Google and OpenAI

Elon Musk

With xAI, Elon Musk’s AI business, he hopes to develop a substitute for ChatGPT. Elon Musk wants to create’maximally curious’ AI that shares human ideals. Engineers from top tech companies are on the xAI team, and Elon Musk will directly run the business.

Elon Musk, a wealthy businessman, finally debuted his eagerly awaited artificial intelligence startup, xAI, on Wednesday. The company’s crew is made up of engineers that Elon Musk sourced from significant American technology companies in an effort to compete with them and develop a ChatGPT competitor.

Elon Musk will personally oversee the venture. He is already well-known for his roles as the CEO of the electric vehicle maker Tesla, the CEO of the rocket launch company SpaceX, and the owner of Twitter. He has been outspoken in his support for industry regulation and the temporary suspension of AI development, citing worries about the potential “civilizational destruction” brought on by AI.

Here are 9 aspects concerning xAI that you need to be aware of:

Describe xAI.

As its name implies, xAI is an AI firm whose mission, according to the website of the organisation, is to comprehend the true essence of the cosmos. Earlier this year, the corporation was formed in the US state of Nevada. The hardware that serves as the foundation of any sizable AI model, graphic processing units (GPUs), were purchased by xAI, according to a Business Insider article from April.

Although the company’s funding source is still unknown, an FT article from April implies that Elon Musk is attempting to court Tesla and SpaceX investors in order to raise money.

Who collaborates with xAI?

On the company’s website, it lists two well-known names. One is Igor Babuschkin, a researcher hired by Elon Musk to develop a ChatGPT rival after working with Alphabet’s Deepmind AI team earlier. He has also held a position on OpenAI’s technical staff.

The other is Dan Hendrycks, a consultant and current director of the Centre for AI Safety, a group that has expressed worries about the security of AI.

A declaration claiming that “mitigating the risk of extinction from AI should be a global priority alongside other societal-scale risks such as pandemics and nuclear war” was published in May by the organisation. It included the signatures of AI scientists, experts, and CEOs.

A platform for “maximally curious” AI

Elon Musk discussed his plan for creating a more secure AI on Wednesday night at a Twitter Spaces event. The explicit coding of morality into xAI’s AI systems, he said, would not be a priority. The business instead wants to develop an AI that is “maximally curious.” Elon Musk thinks that by encouraging the AI to be highly curious, it will organically align its behaviour with human ideals and lessen any risks involved with AI development.

“From an AI safety perspective, the best I can think of is if it strove to comprehend the true essence of the universe. From the perspective that humanity is just a lot more interesting than not-humanity, I believe it will be pro-humanity, Elon Musk stated.

Definition of xAI

According to NDTV, the word “xAI” is frequently used as an acronym for Explainable AI or Interpretable AI in the technological world. This idea focuses on making it possible for people to understand the reasoning behind the choices or forecasts made by artificial intelligence systems.

The xAI team has planned a Twitter Spaces event, a virtual meeting, on July 14 to clarify the company’s goals and vision. They will respond to questions and share information about how the business operates throughout this session.

Superintelligence timeline

According to Elon Musk, superintelligence—artificial intelligence that is superior to human intelligence—will materialise within the next five to six years.

The xAI team

The xAI team is made up of eminent figures with years of experience in the tech sector. This comprises Greg Yang, a former employee of Microsoft, Igor Babuschkin, a former engineer of Google’s DeepMind, Tony Wu, a former Google employee, Christian Szegedy, a former Google research scientist.

Role of Elon Musk in xAI

Elon Musk registered a Nevada-incorporated business called X.AI Corp in March, according to a state document. Elon Musk is the only director named for the company, and the secretary is Jared Birchall, managing director of Elon Musk’s family office.

The xAI project has hired Dan Hendrycks, who is presently the director of the Centre for AI Safety, as an advisor. Hendrycks’ experience is crucial to the team because he specialises in evaluating the dangers related to AI.

In contrast to X Corp, xAI

According to the xAI website, Elon Musk’s recently launched business is independent of X Corp but seeks to continue tight partnerships with well-known organisations like Twitter and Tesla, among others. To bolster its crew, the xAI has made plans to hire qualified engineers and researchers in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Information on Investors

10,000 graphics processing units (GPUs) were purportedly purchased by xAI in March, according to Time Magazine. Advanced AI systems cannot be developed or run without these hardware components. Despite the fact that xAI has not disclosed information regarding its finance, the Financial Times reported in April that Elon Musk was considering the idea of obtaining cash from investors connected to SpaceX and Tesla, two of the firms he oversees.

Has Elon Musk previously experimented with AI?

No, Elon Musk cofounded OpenAI with Sam Altman and a few other people in 2015, but he later left the company in 2018 due to a conflict of interest because he was also working for Tesla. But, according to a story from the news site Semafor earlier this year, Elon Musk reneged on his large $1 billion committed investment and abandoned the company after failing to seize control of the startup in 2018. Altman and the other founders were unconcerned despite Elon Musk’s claim that the “venture had fallen fatally behind Google”.

Elon Musk has been critical of Altman ever since the release of ChatGPT last year and the rumoured $10 billion investment by Microsoft in OpenAI. He even claimed that OpenAI had given Microsoft the majority of its controlling interest in return for the investment.

 

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