Tech giant Microsoft Corp said on Monday that it plans to invest $1 billion in OpenAI, a company based in San Francisco and that both companies had formed a partnership for the long term in order to develop artificial intelligence supercomputing technologies on Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing service.
Silicon Valley investors Peter Thiel, Sam Altman and the co-founder of LinkedIn Reid Hoffman founded OpenAI as a nonprofit with $1 billion in funding four years ago. At the beginning of this year, they created a related for-profit entity to take in outside investment.
OpenAI is known for employing artificial intelligence researchers in order to explore the field and advance in stuff like training robots, teaching a robotic arm to perform human-like tasks and other things.
According to Reuters, the group has also focused on the safety and social implications of AI, researching how computers can generate realistic news stories with little more than headline suggestions and warning researchers to consider how their work and algorithms might be misused by bad actors before publishing them.
OpenAI officials issued a statement in which they said that the Microsoft investment would help it pursue artificial general intelligence or AGI. Artificial general intelligence is the pinnacle of artificial intelligence itself. That means that the computing system can master a subject even better than the best human for that subject in the world and also learn many more things than any human alive.
Sam Altman was talking on this as he said in a statement: “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.’’
When asked about the payment, both companies denied to answer whether Microsoft will pay in cash or the investment would include credits for the Azure cloud computing service.