Tech nonprofit OpenAI recently announced that Tesla’s CEO and co-founder OpenAI, Elon Musk, is leaving the board.
Based on a statement in 2014, Musk believes that AI is “potentially more dangerous than nukes,” and the purpose of OpenAI’s founding in December of 2015 was to develop technology that could protect people from the misuse of AI.
OpenAI said that Musk will continue to advise the board and submit donations. “As Tesla continues to become more focused on AI, this will eliminate a potential future conflict for Elon,” OpenAI wrote in a blog post.
Researchers regularly associate with OpenAI to publish AI research papers and release source code for others to use. OpenAI doesn’t sell any products, unlike Tesla, Facebook, Google and other companies that also do extensive AI research.
Elon Musk is famous for going after one tech challenge after another. He serves as the CEO of both SpaceX and Tesla, co-founded Hyperloop to develop high-speed tube-transportation systems, the Boring Company for digging tunnels, and Neuralink to study the brain.
A few investors are relieved that Musk is now spending the two percent of his time he devoted to OpenAI on other projects, like launching re-usable rockets and moving all the electric and autonomous vehicles he’s promised into customers’ hands.
Elon Musk promised potential customers and investors in the fall of 2016 that vehicles with Tesla’s “Hardware 2” (HW 2.0) sensors would have fully autonomous driving software upgrades in 2019. However, not even Tesla has come close to developing such a self-driving system – nobody has.
In regards to real-world test drives of its self-driving cars in its home state of California, Tesla is seen as behind the competition — especially Alphabet-owned Waymo and GM-owned Cruise. However, Tesla has stated that it’s test drives are being conducted out of state, at closed tracks and via simulation, instead.
Andrej Karpathy was hired by Tesla in June away from OpenAI and made him the head of AI and Autopilot division. When Musk publicly talked in December about Tesla’s plans for special chips that are designed to handle AI workloads, Karpathy was also present. Google and Intel have also developed their own AI chips.