Meredith's Husband

Power Struggles at Open AI: A Modern Tech Saga

May 28, 2024 Episode 114
Power Struggles at Open AI: A Modern Tech Saga
Meredith's Husband
More Info
Meredith's Husband
Power Struggles at Open AI: A Modern Tech Saga
May 28, 2024 Episode 114

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Resources Mentioned:
[Article] "I lost trust": Why the OpenAI team in charge of safeguarding humanity imploded (https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2024/5/17/24158403/openai-resignations-ai-safety-ilya-sutskever-jan-leike-artificial-intelligence)

Key Moments
[1:12] The Story of Open AI and ChatGPT
[1:55] Open Source AI
[4:03] Sam Altman and Safety Measures at Open AI
[8:58] Most importantly, what does Elon Musk say?

Summary (yes, this was created by AI)
In this podcast episode, Meredith's husband unveils a concerning narrative of OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT. He recounts a previous conversation where he hinted at this story, which centers around OpenAI's deviation from its original mission of creating open-source AI to prioritizing profitability.

He explains that Sam Altman, initially a co-founder, assumed the role of CEO and steered the company towards profit maximization, relegating safety and ethical considerations. This led to internal conflict, culminating in a dramatic boardroom coup that briefly ousted Altman. However, Altman swiftly counteracted by enticing key employees to join Microsoft, compelling the board to reinstate him. Subsequently, many safety-focused employees departed or were removed, leaving OpenAI more profit-driven and less concerned with ethical implications.

Meredith and her husband delve into the potential risks of AI under the control of profit-driven individuals, citing warnings from notable figures like Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking. They highlight the absence of regulatory frameworks and the sluggish pace of government action, underscoring the need for consumer awareness and ethical considerations in AI development. Meredith's husband suggests reading an article on Vox for further insights, emphasizing the compelling and cautionary nature of OpenAI's transformation, with far-reaching implications for the future of AI and society.

CONTACT
https://www.meredithshusband.com/contact

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Did you like this episode? Send us a text!

Resources Mentioned:
[Article] "I lost trust": Why the OpenAI team in charge of safeguarding humanity imploded (https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2024/5/17/24158403/openai-resignations-ai-safety-ilya-sutskever-jan-leike-artificial-intelligence)

Key Moments
[1:12] The Story of Open AI and ChatGPT
[1:55] Open Source AI
[4:03] Sam Altman and Safety Measures at Open AI
[8:58] Most importantly, what does Elon Musk say?

Summary (yes, this was created by AI)
In this podcast episode, Meredith's husband unveils a concerning narrative of OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT. He recounts a previous conversation where he hinted at this story, which centers around OpenAI's deviation from its original mission of creating open-source AI to prioritizing profitability.

He explains that Sam Altman, initially a co-founder, assumed the role of CEO and steered the company towards profit maximization, relegating safety and ethical considerations. This led to internal conflict, culminating in a dramatic boardroom coup that briefly ousted Altman. However, Altman swiftly counteracted by enticing key employees to join Microsoft, compelling the board to reinstate him. Subsequently, many safety-focused employees departed or were removed, leaving OpenAI more profit-driven and less concerned with ethical implications.

Meredith and her husband delve into the potential risks of AI under the control of profit-driven individuals, citing warnings from notable figures like Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking. They highlight the absence of regulatory frameworks and the sluggish pace of government action, underscoring the need for consumer awareness and ethical considerations in AI development. Meredith's husband suggests reading an article on Vox for further insights, emphasizing the compelling and cautionary nature of OpenAI's transformation, with far-reaching implications for the future of AI and society.

CONTACT
https://www.meredithshusband.com/contact

Meredith's husband:

All right, you remember last week and I promised a good story.

Meredith:

I've been waiting with bated breath.

Meredith's husband:

I don't think you're going to like this episode.

Meredith:

Me, you're not going to like this, or people who we're talking to listening. No, you Me, meredith.

Meredith's husband:

Yes.

Meredith:

Are animals hurt?

Meredith's husband:

No, no no, no, would I do that.

Meredith:

I don't know You're doing the preamble.

Meredith's husband:

I started to bring this topic up to you.

Meredith:

Yeah.

Meredith's husband:

One night at dinner and you said no, no, no, just keep it. We want to keep it fresh. Don't tell me.

Meredith:

I don't like knowing what I'm having to do. Yes, I agree, I 100% agree. This takes up brain space.

Meredith's husband:

But if you Then I can be present uncomfortable at all during this episode. You only have yourself to blame, okay but, this is, as I indicated last week, what I think is an epic story. An epic story about open ai. The company that released chat, gpt, is called open ai now it's called open ai.

Meredith:

Now it's called.

Meredith's husband:

OpenAI. Now I have not been following this in a detailed manner, Like I'm not an expert on this, but I did come across in this last week an article that summarized everything that has been happening really, really well, also on the website Vox, which I mentioned last week, surprisingly by the same author. I'm going to link to that article below too. So if you find this interesting, you can go read some more about the details. But OpenAI began. They were creating an open source AI model. Yeah, you know open source it like it's free.

Meredith:

Right, and people can just try it and they get, don't they? Doesn't the company kind of track the movements of people and gain? Yeah?

Meredith's husband:

I think, like so an example. I don't know how to describe it exactly, but an example would be there was a browser that was open, open source browser called Chromium. Google took that and a whole bunch of code as a browser. You can still get the browser Chromium. That is a whole bunch of code as a browser. You can still get the browser Chromium. Google took that code and tweaked it a little bit and they released their own browser called Chrome. Chromium was free to anybody. Anybody who wanted to take it and tweak it could do it. Google had their version, the browser that we use. Brave, they took Chromium. They made their own version. There are lots of other versions, browsers, I should say built on Chromium. Chromium was the open source material that anybody could use. Open AI started the same way. They were developing this and anybody could use it. At some point along the way, they said you know what? No, let's change to a I'm going to call it a for-profit model and let's make a shit ton of money because we're way ahead of everybody else.

Meredith:

Yeah, why not?

Meredith's husband:

I was going to say we could make a killing, but that might be a little bit too close to the truth. Oh, no, no nobody is being killed.

Meredith:

You did preface this, so now I'm just looking at everything like it's not that bad.

Meredith's husband:

It's not that bad. So at that point they named a new CEO, a guy named Sam Altman, who I believe was one of the founders. He then became CEO and he has proved to just be like the classic CEO of like money, money, money, money. Like the song I'm not going to sing it.

Meredith:

Money, money, money. Yeah, like the song, I'm not going to sing it Money, money, money. That's not the song I was thinking of. It's not the song I was thinking of, but that's a good one In the rich man's world, yeah.

Meredith's husband:

So Sam Altman had co-founders. That's what I want. He had co-founders and Sam Altman became the CEO. There was also a portion of the company that was I don't remember exactly what it was called it's like the safety team saying, hey, let's do this in a responsible way because this could be dangerous, like if we we need to keep it, we need to make sure that we do this in a responsible manner. They had a big team of people, a lot of professionals, and that was their job. So Sam Altman so the rumor goes, and so this story has outlined way more interested in profit, not so much interested in the safety. One of his co-founders was head of that safety team. Yeah, do you remember it was probably a few months ago now big news that Sam Altman was ousted as CEO. He was fired like literally overnight the. He was fired like literally overnight. The board was like you're gone.

Meredith:

Done Yesterday's me.

Meredith's husband:

Behind the scenes. What was happening is that people who were involved in that safety team were recognizing more and more that Sam Altman was not interested in safety, and there was a bit of a coup. Oh nice, like the show. What's the show? The HBO show.

Meredith:

A gazillion of them Succession.

Meredith's husband:

Succession. Yes, it reminded me very much of succession and the boardroom politics and the board voting. And Sam Altman got ousted, boom, he's gone. So that same day, sam Altman says okay, I'm taking pretty much all of the employees from OpenAI and we're going to Microsoft and we're just going to pick up where we left off. And so, literally the day after he was fired, the board reversed their decision. Sam Altman came back. He came back stronger than ever Of course he did.

Meredith:

He just fed the monster. Yeah, Somebody used the phrase. Many people have somebody used the monster yeah, somebody used the the phrase.

Meredith's husband:

Many people have probably used the phrase you shoot it. If you shoot at the king, you better. You better hit him or her. Yeah, I guess the king is a him but. If you shoot the king, don't miss. Yeah, because the king came back and guess what? All the people who were part of that coup guess what has happened to them they're fired now he got more board seats were they fired he? They have been Removed. They have been slowly disappearing.

Meredith:

Interesting Dying Pretty much all of them.

Meredith's husband:

No, no, no, no, no. Been resigned been replaced. You know all about bullying, whatever. Now he got Sam Altman, got more board seats, he got more power, so he got more influence and, as a result, all the people who are more safety minded have been leaving the company. Now they haven't said much because those people all have stock options Right as long as they signed an NDA yeah of course.

Meredith's husband:

So they can't. If they go out and they say, if they spill a bunch of insider information and they say this is why this is what's happening, they're going to lose their stock options, they're going to lose potentially a lot of money, of money. Yeah, so they don't say anything.

Meredith's husband:

But but they like there's been a string of I don't know how many, no, not leaks, but a string of these people leave like resigning, being fired, etc. Etc. They are just, they're dropping like flies to the point that there's pretty much nobody left. From what I understand, there's very few people left interested in that safety aspect.

Meredith:

Because everyone's just interested in the money.

Meredith's husband:

Everyone is Well. Sam Altman is the one who was. Yeah, my culture is so bad.

Meredith:

So it's an epic story. It doesn't look good.

Meredith's husband:

It's an epic story, like story good.

Meredith:

it's an epic story like, I guarantee you many people are working on scripts for this right now because this you can't. Is there any way that the people who want safety are going to come back bigger and better?

Meredith's husband:

so that's or there's going to be a massive leak, somehow like they can keep their money and someone anonymously can oust or leak everything.

Meredith's husband:

Yeah, I don't know the answer to that. This is one reason I prefer using the Gemini AI. I mean, there's nothing, I don't know. What do we do? Do we write to our senators or whatever Like? Part of the reason that this is so dangerous, I think, is that there are no regulations set on AI, and you know how slow government moves. They cannot keep up with the pace of AI in terms of regulating this. I don't know the solution. Personally, I gravitate towards using the Google, which is much you know. I've been watching Google very closely for two decades and how they respond to a myriad of different situations and for the most part, I feel they are powerful, doing a really good job. Ethics-wise, like in terms of, or, I should say, in comparison to the other big tech companies, I think they are way, way, way, way, way better. They're way more responsible than the other tech companies like OpenAI.

Meredith:

I'm very glad you didn't tell me this over dinner. I would have been very upset and I've not slept.

Meredith's husband:

Well, so this reminds me of I know you don't like Elon Musk.

Meredith:

I don't like Elon Musk. I don't like Elon Musk. I used to like Elon.

Meredith's husband:

Musk. But Elon Musk has proved to be a bit of a wacko. But something that he said about AI was not that AI is intrinsically dangerous. It's whose hands does it fall into? It's the people that are dangerous. And Stephen Hawking said like a lot of really smart people have said similar things, and I just find it interesting that the very first company to really leap ahead in terms of AI is doing right out of the gate all the things that you kind of feared the most.

Meredith:

Yeah, and just for their own profit. It's very short-sighted.

Meredith's husband:

Yes, yes, like the people who created social media. Sam Altman is probably on his way to being the richest person in the world. Of course, times 10. Yeah, but anyway. So what can we do? I don't know, but that's why I'm going to link to this article. The person who wrote this article wrote the same article that I mentioned last week.

Meredith's husband:

Very, very good and, if you're interested, which I am in, perhaps steering the world away from creating our AI overlords. What can we do? Because it's going to on some level, it's going to come down to consumers. Like, I don't think the government is going to step in. Like I said, they just don't work fast enough.

Meredith:

Start electing dogs.

Meredith's husband:

So check it out if you're interested in that.

Meredith:

Yeah, for sure.

The Story of Open AI and ChatGPT
Open Source AI
Sam Altman and Safety Measures at Open AI
Most importantly, what does Elon Musk say?