Life after OpenAI? Here is what Sam Altman said about his new course in AI
Former OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, ousted amidst a raging controversy, unveils plans for a new AI venture, potentially teaming up with Greg Brockman on an innovative project.
In an unexpected turn of events, Sam Altman, the former CEO of OpenAI, has revealed plans for a new venture after parting ways with the renowned artificial intelligence company last Friday. The man did not seem to be affected by the unceremonious exit from a company that he co-created and built. Altman, who holds a prominent global position in the AI landscape, faced a controversial dismissal amid concerns raised by the board about his non-transparent activities. The decision to oust Altman was rooted in what the board deemed a lack of consistent transparency on his part, hindering the board's ability to fulfil its responsibilities effectively. As a result, confidence in Altman's leadership capabilities waned, leading to his departure from the helm of OpenAI. However, the board had sacked him without the presence of then President of AI, Greg Brockman. Brockman himself resigned thereafter, indicating his disapproval.
Now, fresh off this surprising exit, The Information has reported that Altman is actively discussing a new project with potential investors. Speculation suggests that he might be collaborating with OpenAI's former president, Brockman. Earlier rumours hinted at a partnership between Altman and design luminary, former Apple design honcho, Jony Ive for an ambitious "iPhone of Artificial Intelligence" project, but Altman has since described his ideas as "very nascent," The Verge reported.
Insiders familiar with the plan reveal that Ive and Altman aspire to develop a device offering a "more natural and intuitive user experience" for interacting with artificial intelligence. Drawing inspiration from the transformative impact of touchscreen technology on the original iPhone, the duo is exploring ways to revolutionise users' engagement with AI. Notably, funding for this endeavour is reportedly being offered by Softbank Group's chief Masayoshi Son, with an emphasis on involving Arm, the chip design company in which Son holds a 90 percent stake.
While Ive played a pivotal role in shaping the first iPhone, he has previously expressed concerns about the addictive nature of smartphones. In a 2018 interview with the Financial Times, Ive emphasised the "moral responsibility" of tech companies to address such issues and anticipate unintended consequences when developing new products.
Meanwhile, Altman's departure signifies a significant shift for OpenAI, prompting industry observers to keenly anticipate how the company will navigate this unexpected change in leadership.