Home > News content

Create a new financing record! Microsoft gave OpenAI a billion dollars to develop super AI

via:博客园     time:2019/7/23 8:12:37     readed:148


The largest single investment in the AI ​​field to date.

Text: Spectral

Monday, July 22, US time, the world's highest-profile artificial intelligence research organization, based in San FranciscoOpenAI LP (profit) announced that it has accepted Microsoft's $1 billion investmentTo accelerate the development and commercialization of "artificial general intelligence" (AGI).

This institution that constantly promotes the boundaries of AI research and effectiveness,Microsoft's Azure will be considered an exclusive cloud computing provider.The two companies will also jointly develop new technologies and features for Microsoft's cloud computing platform Azure.

Through this investment, OpenAI gained the first important strategic investment from the transformation of the restricted profit organization, and the new funds will help them greatly [the AI ​​has a broader capability].

As one of the world's largest public cloud computing companies, Microsoft Azure has been endorsed by a strong research unit. In the past, Azure has led other giants in AI business applications; in the future, it will be exclusively authorized to commercialize OpenAI's cutting-edge research, leading the position or will be more robust.

OpenAI was founded in 2015 by Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon · Elon Musk, former venture capital incubator Y Combinator's former CEO Sam · and Sam Altman. Computer scientist, award-winning neural network technology AlexNet co-inventor Ilya & middot; Ilya Sutskever officially joined the agency as research director in 2016.

Other investors in the agency include LinkedIn co-founder Reid · Reid Hoffman, famous investor Peter · Peter Thiel.

At the time of its creation, OpenAI Inc was a not-for-profit organization. But in 2019, in order to use financial returns to motivate new capital to enter and attract talent, under the leadership of Altman, who just left from YC,Non-profit organization OpenAI IncOpenAI LP, a subsidiary of a capped-profit entity, was formed.

In the new framework, OpenAI LP's investors can only get up to 100 times the return on their investment, regardless of the true return on investment, which means limited profit. In the absence of an accident, Microsoft's investment in OpenAI LP should be the first large additional capital injection by OpenAI LP in addition to the additional investment by the founding team.


OpenAI is one of the single organizations that have made the greatest contribution to the evolution of artificial intelligence in recent years, especially in terms of its deep technical neural network.

At the beginning of its creation, OpenAI realized that complex video games might be an important scenario for developing and proving AI capabilities. Researchers used techniques similar to Go AI AlphaGo vs Li Shizhen, which allowed AI to play against themselves and spent only two weeks.

The trained AI defeated the top Dota 2 player from Ukraine in the 1v1 battle of the e-sports tournament TI 2017, and became famous in the first battle; in 2018, the AI ​​has acquired 5v5 capability, named OpenAI Five, but because of the extremely strict The ability to limit, lost two games in a row; in 2019, OpenAI Five defeated the world's number one OG team in 5v5 battle.

OpenAI puts this game AI online, allowing ordinary players to challenge it. In a total of four days,OpenAI Five completed 4.27 million Dota 2 games with a win of 4,240 and a winning percentage of 99.4%.


In 2017, OpenAI developed a virtual wrestling robot RoboSumo with deep neural network. It did not design any walking-related capabilities for it, let it conduct self-supervised learning, not only learned the ability to walk, jump, etc., but was placed in a brand new In the extremely harsh environment, it quickly adapts to the new environment and can learn to maintain self-balance in the virtual wind.

OpenAI also enables virtual AIs of different shapes (humanoid, crawling, etc.) to quickly learn new abilities, such as wrestling (to make the opponent lose balance while balancing themselves), kicking, blocking and other complex targets. This is also the first time that a humanoid AI has the ability to learn independently and to make a difference.


Last year, OpenAI released GPT2, a generative language model that automatically generates contextually accurate and creative content based on the extremely limited above, and says “give it a sentence and compose a book”.

In the past, similar models required specific professional corpus to train in order to achieve acceptable results. For example, the AI ​​that writes poetry has to use a lot of poetry to train; the AI ​​that writes news, the data set used is also written news material. The power of GPT-2 is:This model can be used for a variety of language-related tasks without the training of specialized corpora, and the results are surprising.

OpenAI released GPT2 on the official website, showing that it has expanded news (to a large extent in the writing of fake news), as well as reading comprehension questions (such as answering questions, cloze, abbreviations, translations, etc.).


As can be seen from these OpenAI's iconic works, the research direction of this institution is actually very clear:Complete tasks that were considered to be completed by people in the past,For example, playing complex real-time strategy games, writing creative ideas, and gaining learning and inspiration.

These tasks, in the eyes of OpenAI, are the definition of artificial general intelligence (AGI). Now that OpenAI has established a for-profit organization, the most important goal is to make these research results commercialized as soon as possible, generate value, and return investors under the premise of controlling the ceiling.

From this perspective, Microsoft as a strategic investor is very suitable for OpenAI. The agency's research relies heavily on expensive cloud computing resources, and Microsoft's $1 billion capital injection not only allows OpenAI to stop "lack of money" but also deeper collaboration with the Azure cloud computing platform.

Microsoft is definitely not short of money. In fact, it is currently the most valuable company in the world. This $1 billion investment will bring OpenAI, the most critical, to the Azure platform, and will create significant value customers in the future.

“Creating artificial universal intelligence will be the most important technological development in human history, and it is possible to reshape the human development track.” Altman said that OpenAI's mission is to ensure that all human beings can benefit from artificial general intelligence. We believe that AGI is safely and reliably deployed, and that it is essential to maximize and maximize economic benefits. ”

To this end, Microsoft will work with OpenAI to build a supercomputing technology foundation for manual general intelligence.

Of course, both Microsoft and OpenAI seem to have no idea how to advance the ultimate goal of AGI implementation. What's more, the topic of general artificial intelligence has been the focus of controversy in the past few years.Even Musk, one of the investors/co-founders of OpenAI (now withdrawn), is also a skeptic of artificial intelligence, fearing that the control of technology by lawless people will have consequences for society.

However, in the past few years, despite the fact that Microsoft has made a lot of money, it has been implementing the corporate ideals of every person and organization in the society of technology and power (energy), and the benefits of artificial intelligence and technology. Etc. as an important code. In this way, even if the development of general artificial intelligence is in crisis, at least today OpenAI is handed over to a good person who does not have much black history.

China IT News APP

Download China IT News APP

Please rate this news

The average score will be displayed after you score.

Post comment

Do not see clearly? Click for a new code.

User comments