Elon Musk Opens Grok AI Source Amid OpenAI Lawsuit

Elon Musk has made an announcement that he will release his artificial intelligence (AI) model called Grok as an open-source project. This decision comes amidst a legal dispute between Musk’s company, xAI, and OpenAI, the developer of a rival AI model known as ChatGPT. Musk took to a social media platform on March 11 to inform his followers that Grok will now be open sourced, which was not the case previously. While Musk did not provide further details on his plans, the response from users was mostly positive, commending him for this move. Musk engaged with one user who suggested that OpenAI should follow suit, to which Musk accused OpenAI of being a “lie.”

Musk filed a lawsuit against OpenAI on February 29, alleging that they had violated the agreement made when OpenAI was still a nonprofit organization. He claimed that the partnership between OpenAI and Microsoft contradicted the original goal of advancing open-source Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) technology for the benefit of humanity. Reports indicate that Microsoft has invested close to $3 billion in OpenAI by the end of 2023. In his legal action, Musk demanded that OpenAI return to its initial open-source principles and requested an injunction to prevent their profit-based exploitation of AGI technology.

OpenAI executives later revealed a joint statement stating that the transformation of the company into a for-profit entity was initially prompted by emails sent by Musk himself. This clarification caused OpenAI to reinstate its former CEO, Sam Altman, who was previously fired in November 2023. OpenAI admitted that they had underestimated the impact of Altman’s departure and the subsequent destabilization it caused.

Musk’s decision to open source Grok aligns with his push for the advancement of open-source AGI for the greater good of humanity, as expressed in his lawsuit against OpenAI. Grok, developed by Musk’s company xAI, is an AI chatbot similar to OpenAI’s ChatGPT but with some distinguishing features. Grok has the capability to retrieve real-time information from social media platforms and provide answers to more controversial questions that are often rejected by other AI systems. Access to the chatbot is limited to users with verified accounts on X, Musk’s platform. Some comparisons suggest that Grok AI, powered by the Grok-1 large language model (LLM), outperforms ChatGPT-3.5 but falls short of the performance level achieved by ChatGPT-4.

Marrissa Burleigh

Marrissa Burleigh

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