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Invested $1 Billion by Microsoft In OpenAI for Supercomputing Tech

Arpatech Jul 24, 2019

Dollar 1 billion has been invested by Microsoft in OpenAI, reaching a multiyear deal with the artificial intelligence research startup to mutually grow new supercomputing tech. OpenAI will run its services on Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform.

Launched in 2015, San Francisco-based OpenAI has frequently highlighted its focus on the moral use of artificial intelligence that “benefits all of humanity.” Microsoft and OpenAI said that artificial intelligence should be used to resolve presently obdurate problems such as the global climate crisis.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement: “AI is one of the most transformative technologies of our time and has the potential to help solve many of our world’s most pressing challenges.” “By bringing together OpenAI’s breakthrough technology with new Azure AI supercomputing technologies, our ambition is to democratize AI — while always keeping AI safety front and center — so everyone can benefit.”

OpenAI, which has a unique structure, is supported by leading tech leaders such as Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, and Peter Thiel, a venture capitalist, co-founder of PayPal and a Facebook board member. It began as a nonprofit but earlier this year, the nonprofit formed a for-profit company that the nonprofit’s board still controls.

The new partnership with Microsoft comes at a time when cloud services for OpenAI have allegedly become a noteworthy cost. Microsoft said that OpenAI has been an Azure customer since 2016.

Earlier this year OpenAI offered a glimpse into GPT-2, a AI-powered text generator that focuses on reading comprehension, answering questions and summarizing.

“We are in the process of porting our Rapid project to run on Azure,” an OpenAI representative said. “Rapid is a large-scale reinforcement learning software we’ve been developing for the last few years, and was used to train both our Dota agents and the robotic hand.”

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