Tech startups, policymakers, and business leaders recently convened to hear OpenAI CEO Sam Altman’s candid insights into the competitive landscape of artificial intelligence (AI).
According to the Economic Times, Altman, 38, was asked how a small, smart team with a budget of $10 million could potentially build something substantial within AI.
“Look, the way this works is we’re going to tell you it’s totally hopeless to compete with us on training foundation models you shouldn’t try, and it’s your job to, like, try anyway.”
In other words, competing with OpenAI in creating foundational AI models would likely be a futile endeavor.
However, he implied that OpenAI’s prowess in the emerging industry shouldn’t discourage startups from attempting to innovate despite the challenges they might face.
Altman’s comments came in response to a question about the opportunities for Indian startups to make a significant impact in AI, given the constraints of much more limited resources compared to tech giants like OpenAI.
“People are focused on not stifling innovation, and that any regulatory framework has got to make sure that the benefits of this technology come to the world,” said Altman where he met with other Korean startups.
Altman also discussed the present state of AI and the broader perspective of its future trajectory.
“None of the current systems really matter,” he opined, drawing an analogy between the excitement surrounding GPT-4 and the now-antiquated original iPhone. To Altman, any fixation on current systems, their limitations, and their capabilities is a misstep.
“It’s totally cool that ChatGPT can write that poem. When a future system can cure all disease or help us address climate change or radically improve education — that’s quite impactful.”
Altman highlighted two key realizations that, in his view, will mark a turning point in human history. The first is OpenAI’s algorithm, which learns with “no tricks.” The second is the predictive improvement of its systems with scale.
Altman is aware of potential risks associated with exponential advancements in AI. Current AI systems, like GPT-4, pose no existential risk.
But when it comes to future iterations — GPT-10, for instance — his perspective took on a more cautious hue.
“Even if it’s a one percent chance, putting a lot of effort into thinking, studying how we align an AGI, how we design Safe Systems at this kind of scale is super important,” said Altman.
Previously, Telsa CEO Elon Musk voiced his concerns about the dangers of AI calling for the regulation of AI including the dangers.
Musk was on the board in the beginning stages of OpenAI.
Microsoft made a $10 billion investment in the company.
Produced in association with Benzinga
Edited by Alberto Arellano and Jessi Rexroad Shull