Microsoft is investing $1 billion in OpenAI, a San Francisco-based non-profit focused on open source Artificial Intelligence (AI).
OpenAI has worked on open source AI advancements in areas including robotic hand development.
Other areas of AI work by the company are heavily aligned towards what we might call the ‘social implications’ of AI in real world deployments.
OpenAI’s mission is to ensure that so-called Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) benefits all of humanity — the OpenAI Charter describes the principles that guide it as it executes on this mission.
What is Artificial General Intelligence (AGI)?
AGI is AI that is designed to work with people to help solve currently intractable multidisciplinary problems, including global challenges such as climate change, more personalised healthcare and education etc. Modern AI systems work well for the specific problem on which they’ve been trained, but getting AI systems to help address some of the hardest problems facing the world today is argued to require generalisation and deep mastery of multiple AI technologies.
Microsoft and OpenAI say they will will focus on building a computational platform in Azure of ‘unprecedented scale’, which will train and run increasingly advanced AI models, include hardware technologies that build on Microsoft’s supercomputing technology.
“The creation of AGI will be the most important technological development in human history, with the potential to shape the trajectory of humanity,” said Sam Altman, CEO, OpenAI. “Our mission is to ensure that AGI technology benefits all of humanity, and we’re working with Microsoft to build the supercomputing foundation on which we’ll build AGI. We believe it’s crucial that AGI is deployed safely and securely and that its economic benefits are widely distributed. We are excited about how deeply Microsoft shares this vision.”
Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft added a comment to confirm that OpenAI technology will work with Microsoft Azure AI supercomputing technologies — and that his ambition is to democratise AI — while always keeping AI safety front and centre — so everyone can benefit.
All of it will adhere to the two companies’ shared principles on ethics and trust, apparently.