Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX and owner of Twitter, made a dramatic about-face on Wednesday night when he announced the launch of his own artificial intelligence business under the name xAI.
The purpose of Elon Musk’s new artificial intelligence firm, as stated in a tweet, is to “understand the true nature of the universe.” More details will be revealed in a live Twitter Spaces chat on Friday, as promised on the corporate website.
Announcing formation of @xAI to understand reality— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 12, 2023
Members of xAI’s team have previously worked on projects including DeepMind’s AlphaCode and OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 and GPT-4 chatbots. They also have experience with Google Research, Microsoft Research, Twitter, and Tesla. It appears that Musk is setting up xAI to compete with OpenAI, Google, and Anthropic, the developers of popular chatbots like ChatGPT, Bard, and Claude, as reported by CNBC.
No Spontaneous Action?
In April of this year, the Financial Times reported that Elon Musk had purchased thousands of GPU processors from Nvidia in preparation for powering a hypothetical huge language model.
In the same month, Musk announced his intentions to create a new AI tool dubbed “TruthGPT,” expressing concern that established AI firms were giving preference to “politically correct” systems.
If you're not concerned about AI safety, you should be. Vastly more risk than North Korea. pic.twitter.com/2z0tiid0lc— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 12, 2017
It begins … https://t.co/mbjw5hWC5J— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 4, 2017
In the wake of Elon Musk’s “Anti-AI Letter”
Dan Hendrycks, executive director of the Centre for AI Safety in San Francisco, will serve as an advisor to the AI startup. In May, he led a group of tech industry leaders in publishing an open letter arguing that “mitigating the risk of extinction from AI should be a global priority alongside other societal-scale risks, such as pandemics and nuclear war.”
Many academics and ethicists responded to the letter with concerns that it overemphasizes the dangers of AI in the future at the expense of the immediate harm that some algorithms inflict on marginalized people.
Greg Yang, co-founder of Elon Musk’s xAI, said in an interview that the business plans to study the “mathematics of deep learning” as part of its mission to “develop the ‘theory of everything’ for large neural networks” and “take AI to the next level.”
Reportedly founded by Musk in March, xAI is a Nevada corporation. On the xAI website, the firm acknowledges its split from X Corp and says it will “work closely with X (Twitter), Tesla, and other companies to make progress towards our mission.” He had previously changed Twitter’s identity to “X Corp.” in several financial reports.
xAI stands for “explainable AI.” It is a new field of AI research that focuses on developing AI systems that are explainable and understandable to humans.
The goal of xAI is to develop AI systems that are explainable and understandable to humans. This means that humans should be able to understand how the AI system works, and why it makes the decisions that it does. This will allow humans to trust and control AI systems, and to ensure that they are used in a safe and ethical way.