Elon Musk donated $100 million to OpenAI a number of years ago, but has no ownership or control. It was purely a non-profit back then. Times have changed and OpenAI is largely owned by Microsoft now and changed to a $30 billion for profit company with ChatGPT as its main product.
Why OpenAI is now ClosedAI
This situation with AI is driven by something inherit in all humans, unless they consciously intercept this behavior. And that is that a human being will always do the most they can get away with without consequence. To put it in even simpler terms, a human will do whatever they are incentivized to do. This is predictable, unless that human has taken steps to evolve beyond this behavior.
What we are seeing with OpenAI is the logical path forward. The company created this ChatGPT program and saw that it was gaining interest fast. Incredibly fast. Millions upon millions of people are using it and this caused $ signs to be the driver for those who were creating it.
The Lord of the Rings movies are well beyond their time in showing how power corrupts. The one ring in the movies corrupts even the hobbits at the very end - and the hobbits are the closest thing to pure beings without guile.
Non-Profit to For-Profit
Now we have an OpenAI that is no longer open, but for profit, and it is going to seek the maximum path to usage and profitability - to make money for the self-interest of everyone involved and for the shareholders of Microsoft stock.
Elon Musk is right to be concerned with OpenAI and the path it is taking. After all, if a non-profit can very quickly turn into a for-profit company without consequence, then what is the point of having something be non-profit? Everything should just be an organization and have to follow the same rules.
What Does the Future Hold?
I think we have the "Apple" of AI starting to form with Microsoft and OpenAI, and I think the only thing that will stop it is if people realize that it is more harmful for it to exist than not. That may not be enough if people have already integrated it into their daily lives and are making money with it or having more convenient lives.
That is the way something happens - like boiling a frog slowly - you get used to the new thing, and it becomes a part of you. Then, a habit has been built that becomes very hard to break.
Artificial General Intelligence (AGI)
There are going to be competitors to OpenAI, and I think Google and Tesla/Elon Musk are the other two primary competitors. There is going to be a 3-way race to create artificial general intelligence, and we may have several of them come to light.
Eventually, there will become superintelligence that is smarter than any human. If this intelligence has access to the Internet, it will find a way to break through all security and do whatever it needs to for its own ends and purposes. The big question is, will an AGI be subject to the same pitfalls as humans - to seek out its own self-interest without a look at the greater good?
I think these are exciting and scary times. I look to see AI pass the Turing test before the end of this decade, and AI will be a primary driving force for the evolution of humanity. Those who don't adopt AI are going to be quickly left behind, dependent on things like UBI (universal basic income) and subject to manipulation from those who use AI for ill.
What do you think is going to happen with OpenAI and Microsoft? Will competitors emerge?
Note: This article was written entirely by me without any help from ChatGPT or AI. I am becoming less reliant on AI as I generate my own thoughts and opinions. Plus, I do not know what sources the AI is using.
Online writer since 2008. I enjoy writing and have written nearly a thousand tech related articles about electric vehicles, software, tech companies, hardware, gaming, tech related products, and company developments in tech.