Elon Musk is reportedly looking into launching a generative AI project within Twitter, despite having signed an open letter calling for a pause on the technology's development.
Generative AI platforms like ChatGPT have been all the rage in the tech industry in the last few months, with scores of companies scrambling to establish their own alternatives. However, the tech is problematic in a number of ways, not the least of which is its potential for spreading misinformation.
Now, it seems a controversial figure is destined to explore the controversial technology, with reports pointing to a potential generative AI project coming to Twitter.
Elon Musk Investing in Generative AI for Twitter
According to reliable sources, Elon Musk is pursuing a generative AI project at Twitter. The infamous CEO has reportedly purchased approximately 10,000 graphics processing units (GPUs), which are known for their use in developing the equally infamous technology.
The sources also noted that the generative AI project is a large language model (LLM) similar to ChatGPT, although it is reportedly in the very early stages of development.
On top of all that, this many GPUs were likely not very cheap, particularly if they're the kinds made for developing large-scale generative AI tech. Given Twitter's economic troubles of late, like ad revenue drops and trouble paying the rent, it's safe to assume that Musk is betting big on this development.
Pause Giant AI Experiments: An Open Letter
The news that Musk is investing so heavily in generative AI technology is surprising. Not because the CEO of Twitter is light on cash, but because he signed an open letter calling for a six-month pause on the development of generative AI technology due to the “profound risks to society and humanity.”
Signed by other tech pioneers like Steve Wozniak, the open letter expressly condemns the way in which big tech companies have rushed through launches to get this technology out in the business world as fast as possible.
Musk hasn't just signed it, but he has also been a vocal opponent, stating (tweeting) that the technology has dangerous potential for future use.
Musk's History with OpenAI
Elon Musk's initial aversion to ChatGPT may have seemed strange to those that know him as a pioneer of innovative technology. After all, a guy that can make reusable rockets and electric cars seems like he'd be fully on board for something as tech-forward as generative AI.
However, there is something to consider: Elon Musk used to be the public face of OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT. While he was a big part of the company when it launched as a non-profit in 2015, he left the board in 2018, long before it gained the notoriety it has today.
This could well point to the reason Musk really wanted to slow the tech down, making his play to create his own version that much clearer.