Wednesday, May 31, 2023 | 02:58 pm

Elon Musk Talks about AI Battles with Microsoft and Google over ChatGPT on Fox News

Elon Musk Talks about AI Battles with Microsoft and Google over ChatGPT on Fox News

The world’s wealthiest billionaires are drawing battle lines when it comes to who will control AI, according to Elon Musk in an interview with Tucker Carlson on Fox News, which aired this week.

Musk explained that he cofounded ChatGPT-maker OpenAI in reaction to Google cofounder Larry Page’s lack of concern over the danger of AI outsmarting humans.

He said the two were once close friends and that he would often stay at Page’s house in Palo Alto where they would talk late into the night about the technology. Page was such a fan of Musk’s that in Jan. 2015, Google invested $1 billion in SpaceX for a 10% stake with Fidelity Investments. “He wants to go to Mars. That’s a worthy goal,” Page said in a March 2014 TED Talk .

But Musk was concerned over Google’s acquisition of DeepMind in Jan. 2014.

“Google and DeepMind together had about three-quarters of all the AI talent in the world. They obviously had a tremendous amount of money and more computers than anyone else. So I’m like we’re in a unipolar world where there’s just one company that has close to a monopoly on AI talent and computers,” Musk said. “And the person in charge doesn’t seem to care about safety. This is not good.”

Musk said he felt Page was seeking to build a digital super intelligence, a digital god.

“He’s made many public statements over the years that the whole goal of Google is what’s called AGI artificial general intelligence or artificial super intelligence,” Musk said.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai has not disagreed. In his 60 minutes interview on Sunday, while speaking about the company’s advancements in AI, Pichai said that Google Search was only one to two percent of what Google can do. The company has been teasing a number of new AI products it’s planning on rolling out at its developer conference Google I/O on May 10.

Musk said Page stopped talking to him over OpenAI, a nonprofit with the stated mission of “ensuring that artificial general intelligence-AI systems that are generally smarter than humans-benefits all of humanity” that Musk cofounded in Dec. 2015 with Y Combinator CEO Sam Altman and PayPal alums LinkedIn cofounder Reid Hoffman and Palantir cofounder Peter Thiel, among others.

I haven’t spoken to Larry Page in a few years because he got very upset with me over OpenAI,” said Musk explaining that when OpenAI was created it shifted things from a unipolar world where Google controls most of the world’s AI talent to a bipolar world. “And now it seems that OpenAI is ahead,” he said.

But even before OpenAI, as SpaceX was announcing the Google investment in late Jan. 2015, Musk had given $10 million to the Future of Life Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing existential risks from advanced artificial intelligence. That organization was founded in March 2014 by AI scientists from DeepMind, MIT, Tufts, UCSC, among others and were the ones who issued the petition calling for a pause in AI development that Musk signed last month.

In 2018, citing potential conflicts with his work with Tesla, Musk resigned his seat on the board of OpenAI.

“I put a lot of effort into creating this organization to serve as a counterweight to Google and then I kind of took my eye off the ball and now they are closed source, and obviously for profit, and they’re closely allied with Microsoft. In effect, Microsoft has a very strong say, if not directly controls OpenAI at this point,” Musk said.

Ironically, it’s Musk’s longtime friend Hoffman who is the link to Microsoft. The two hit it big together at PayPal and it was Musk who recruited Hoffman to OpenAI in 2015. In 2017, Hoffman became an independent director at Microsoft, then sold LinkedIn to Microsoft for more than $26 billion in 2019 when Microsoft invested its first billion dollars into OpenAI. Microsoft is currently OpenAI’s biggest backer having invested as much as $10 billion more this past January. Hoffman only recently stepped down from OpenAI’s board on March 3 to enable him to start investing in the OpenAI startup ecosystem, he said in a LinkedIn post. Hoffman is a partner in the venture capital firm Greylock Partners and a prolific angel investor.

All sit at the top of the Forbes Real-Time Billionaires List. As of April 17 5pm ET, Musk was the world’s second richest person valued at $187.4 billion, Page the eleventh at $90.1 billion. Google cofounder Sergey Brin is in the 12 spot at $86.3 billion. Thiel ranks 677 with a net worth of $4.3 billion and Hoffman ranks 1570 with a net worth of $2 billion.

Musk said he thinks Page believes all consciousness should be treated equally while he disagrees, especially if the digital consciousness decides to curtail the biological intelligence. Like Pichai, Musk is advocating for government regulation of the technology and says at minimum there should be a physical off switch to cut power and connectivity to server farms in case administrative passwords stop working.

Pretty sure I’ve seen that movie.

Musk told Carlson that he’s considering naming his new AI company TruthGPT.

“I will create a third option, although it’s starting very late in the game,” he said. “Can it be done? I don’t know.”

The entire interview will be available to view on Fox Nation starting April 19 7am ET. Here are some excerpts which includes his thoughts on encrypting Twitter DMs.