Elon Musk Launches xAI, a Safer, Game-Changer in AI Development

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On Wednesday, billionaire entrepreneur, Elon Musk announced the launch of his new AI company, xAI, to deliver a better understanding of “the true nature of the universe.”

In the announcement on xAI’s website, Musk and the team shared that fans can meet and ask questions on the newly-risen company during a Twitter Spaces chat room, on Friday, July 14th.

“Our team is led by Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and Space X,” the announcement stated. “We have previously worked at DeepMindOpenAIGoogle ResearchMicrosoft ResearchTesla, and the University of Toronto. Collectively we contributed some of the most widely used methods in the field, in particular the Adam optimizer, Batch Normalization, Layer Normalization, and the discovery of adversarial examples. We further introduced innovative techniques and analyses such as Transformer-XL, Autoformalization, the Memorizing Transformer, Batch Size Scaling, and μTransfer. We have worked on and led the development of some of the largest breakthroughs in the field including AlphaStar, AlphaCode, Inception, Minerva, GPT-3.5, and GPT-4.”

Through the launch of xAI, Musk aims to position the company as a star rival to OpenAI, Google, and Anthropic. xAI’s pursuit of intelligent excellence is fortified by its team’s previous experience in projects such as Google’s subsidiary DeepMind’s AlphaGo and OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 and GPT-4 chatbots, which were recently launched.

Earlier reports from the Financial Times dating back to April, as well as reports that Musk had acquired a substantial number of graphic processing unites (GPU) from chip giant Nvidia, igniting uncertainty on the development of an unknown powerful language model of xAI.

The company’s quest for safe innovation is supported by the expertise of the executive director of the Center of AI Safety, Dan Hendrycks. The San Francisco-based non-profit has gained attraction for its open letter, signed by some of the tech industry’s most prominent leaders, endorsing the critical urgency of qualifying AI risks as the same as global-scale threats such as global pandemics and nuclear war.

Critics, on the other hand, argue that the excessive attention on AI and its threats stems from the real-life harm generated by algorithms in marginalized communities.

“The application of mathematics and software code to reach computers how to understand, synthesize, and generate knowledge in ways similar to people do,” venture capitalist, Marc Andreessen, wrote in in June. 

“AI doesn’t want, it doesn’t have goals, it doesn’t want to kill you, because it’s not alive. And AI is a machine – is not going to come alive any more than your toaster will.”

To propel AI to new heights, Musk’s new company intends to address the mathematical intricacies of deep learning with the aim of developing a comprehensive “theory of everything” for large neural networks. The company hope to differentiate itself from some of Musk’s diversified company portfolio, specifically from the Twitter entity ‘X Corp.’

In a recent Twitter Space event that took place on Wednesday, the eccentric entrepreneur vocalized his belief on Beijing’s interest in developing a cooperative international framework for AI regulation with leaders.

“China is definitely interested in working in a cooperative international framework for AI regulation,” Musk said.

Musk has always been a strong advocate for the regulation of intelligent tech, and he vocalized said concerns during his latest visit to China in June on this year, alongside Beijing’s governmental spokesperson Wang Wenbin.

During Musk’s visit, Wenbin accentuated his country’s commitment to AI governance and international collaboration on AI security, stating that “China is willing to enhance communication and exchanges with the international community on AI security governance, promote the establishment of an international mechanism with universal participation, and form a governance framework and standards that share broad consensus.”

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