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Elon Musk Launching New AI Company, xAI — But Why?

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Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced plans for a new artificial intelligence company on Friday, called xAI. The AI startup is Musk’s sixth company, including Tesla, SpaceX, Twitter, Neuralink, and The Boring Company. According to Musk, xAI is also set to collaborate with Tesla and Twitter, though it’s unclear exactly how, as of yet.

Image by Chanan Bos | CleanTechnica

During a Twitter Spaces call on Friday, Musk said that his new startup xAI would collaborate with Tesla on the “silicon front” and the “AI software front,” as CNBC reports. The Tesla CEO also said that the artificial intelligence startup would work closely with Twitter, to help teach the “maximally curious” AI systems he hopes to develop for the platform in the coming years.

Musk said the intent of xAI would be to “understand the universe,” adding that the company hopes to build AI tech that “understands the physical world and not just the Internet.” He also claimed that xAI’s use of Twitter data would not be much different from what many are already using the platform for, adding that it would primarily be used for “text training” and “image and video training.”

“I guess we will use the public tweets — obviously not anything private — for training as well, just like basically everyone else has,” Musk said.

According to Musk, “every AI organization on Earth” was already scraping Twitter for data, “in all cases illegally.” He also cites a significant increase in Twitter data scraping in the last several weeks as the reason for Twitter creating new rate limits on the platform. Additionally, Twitter is suing four undisclosed organizations/people in Texas for data scraping, as of earlier this month.

Despite the announcement, Musk didn’t share any financial or logistical details about the plans to collaborate with his other companies, or how these partnerships might work. As CNBC notes, Musk’s companies have done business with each other in various ways over the years, and many of those financial details are publicly disclosed via filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

In any case, Musk also says that AI systems will require increased human-made data, adding comparisons to the Alphabet-owned DeepMind AI Alpha Zero, a program that mastered chess, shogi, and go by playing against itself.

Tesla’s Autopilot and Full Self-Driving (FSD) beta also use driving data to train its AI on how to drive. Musk also discussed the supercomputer project Dojo, which Tesla is developing to use for AI machine learning and computer vision training.

When asked by Whole Mars Catalog (Omar Qazi) during the call if the automaker would use Nvidia or Tesla-developed silicon, Musk suggested that the company could use its own.

“That’s sort of a Tesla question,” Musk responded. “Tesla is building custom silicon. I wouldn’t call anything that Tesla’s producing a ‘GPU’ although one can characterize it in GPU equivalents.”

Time will tell how xAI takes shape in its collaborations with Twitter and Tesla, and the startup’s website says that more information will be “over the next couple of weeks and months.”

Sources: CNBC / xAI

Article from EVANNEX. By Peter McGuthrie.

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