- Elon Musk criticized OpenAI, one of the world’s top AI research organizations, saying it lacks transparency and that his confidence in its technology’s safety is “not high.”
- OpenAI is racing to be the first to build a machine with the reasoning powers of a human mind.
- Musk himself is one of OpenAI’s founders — he stepped away from the company last year, but is still a top donor.
- His criticisms came in response to an investigation into OpenAI by MIT Technology Review’s Karen Hao, which suggests the company is foregoing its vows to be transparent in order to outpace competitors.
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OpenAI, one of the world’s leading artificial intelligence labs, is on a mission to build a machine with human intelligence while prioritizing transparency and safety.
Elon Musk, one of the company’s founders, isn’t confident in its ability to do so.
Musk took to Twitter Monday to criticize OpenAI, arguing that the company “should be more open” and stating that his confidence that it will prioritize safety “is not high.” He specifically called out Dario Amodei, a former Google engineer who now leads OpenAI’s strategy.
—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 17, 2020
Musk’s criticism came in response to a report by MIT Technology Review’s Karen Hao, who revealed a culture of secrecy at OpenAI that runs counter to the nonprofit’s purported commitment to transparency.
OpenAI was founded in 2015 with the mission of building artificial intelligence that could rival human intelligence, raising billions from donors including Musk, Peter Thiel, and Microsoft. Early on, it set itself apart from other AI labs by pledging transparency, but Hao’s report suggests that the organization gradually receded from this promise, opting instead to hide its research from competitors and the general public.
An OpenAI spokesperson declined to comment. A representative for Musk did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.
Musk himself was a founder OpenAI and early cheerleader of its ostensible focus on transparency, but he stepped away in February 2019, stating that he “didn’t agree” with its direction and that Tesla’s AI teams were in direct competition with OpenAI.