Elon Musk Talking to SpaceX, Tesla Investors on Backing an AI Startup

Elon Musk appears to be forging ahead on a new artificial intelligence startup as the frenzy around OpenAI’s ChatGPT has spurred big tech companies to collaborate and compete on chatbots and generative AI tools.  

Musk has been fielding interest from Tesla and SpaceX investors looking to get in on the planned artificial intelligence company, FT reported on Friday, citing an anonymous source familiar with the conversations. 

A company called X.AI Corp. was also registered in Nevada in March, naming Musk as director, according to a filing in the state, first reported by the Wall Street Journal

Musk did not respond to emailed requests for comment sent to his Tesla and SpaceX email addresses. An inquiry sent to Twitter’s communications address received a poop-emoji response, which has recently become a standard reply to press inquiries. 

Insider’s Kali Hays has also previously reported that Musk has brought on artificial intelligence experts, and obtained roughly 10,000 graphics processing units. 

The moves seem to show the significant infrastructure and resources that Musk appears to be devoting to an endeavor that he himself has expressed concerns about. 

In March, Musk signed onto an open letter that called on the industry to put the development of “powerful” AI on hold for at six months. 

“Contemporary AI systems are now becoming human-competitive at general tasks, and we must ask ourselves: Should we let machines flood our information channels with propaganda and untruth?” according to the letter put out by the nonprofit Future of Life Institute. “Should we automate away all the jobs, including the fulfilling ones?”

The success of OpenAI’s ChatGPT bot has spurred AI-related announcements in recent months from big tech companies including Microsoft, which has a multi-billion dollar tie-up with OpenAI, and which in February launched its updated Bing search engine equipped with an AI chatbot. 

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg also announced a new AI model called “LLaMA,” meant to assist research on AI-driven chatbots, while Google rolled out its own Bard chatbot last month to many public users.

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