After more than a decade of Silicon Valley influence, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman is emerging as a technology giant for the AI era, riding the wave of ChatGPT, the bot his company unleashed on the world.
Sam Altman testified before a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee panel on Tuesday, saying artificial intelligence could be in a “printing press” moment, which would make him one of the leading trailblazers. .
In 2015, Altman, along with Tesla CEO Elon Musk and others, founded OpenAI, a research company with the goal of building generative AI to benefit humanity.
“The technological progress we’ll make in the next 100 years will be far greater than we’ve made since we first controlled fire and invented the wheel,” Altman said in a 2021 blog post. rice field.
– Startup guru –
According to a lengthy 2016 New Yorker profile, Altman was born into a Jewish family in 1985, grew up in a suburb of St. Louis, and got his first computer when he was eight.
In an interview with Esquire, Altman said computers and the access to online communities they enable have helped him overcome being gay in conservative parts of the country.
Like many techies before him, Altman dropped out of Stanford to found Loopt, a company that allows smartphone users to selectively share their location.
Loopt was acquired in a deal worth $43.4 million in 2012, securing Altman’s place in Silicon Valley.
Altman took a year off, during which he “read dozens of textbooks and learned about areas that interested me,” the San Francisco resident wrote in the post.
He talked about what he learned about nuclear engineering, synthetic biology, investments and AI.
“That seed was planted for something that would later work deeply,” he said.
– T-shirt and shorts –
In 2014, Altman became president of Y Combinator, an “accelerator” that provides guidance and funding to startups in exchange for equity in young companies.
Altman has expanded Y Combinator’s investment strategy beyond software startups to include biotech, energy and other areas.
“He thinks fast and talks fast. Fierce, but in a good way,” says Industrial Microbes founder Derek Greenfield, who met Altman when the biotech startup was backed by Y Combinator. said Mr.
Greenfield recalled Altman always dressed casually, sometimes wearing a T-shirt and shorts.
“He was a very down-to-earth guy,” Greenfield said.
Altman left Y Combinator to focus his energies on artificial intelligence despite his fear of risk.
“He’s a very deep thinker and incredibly focused on getting things right,” said Jeremy Goldman, senior director of marketing and commerce at Insider Intelligence.
In 2018, Mr. Altman endorsed the “United Slate” political project aimed at improving housing and health care policies.
It also held a fundraising event for 2020 US presidential candidate Andrew Yang, who advocates for a universal basic income.
Yang “had some ideas about a universal basic income that everyone needs, partly because AI is about to take people’s jobs,” Goldman said.
Altman said the combination of artificial intelligence, robotics and cost-free energy could essentially allow machines to do all the work, potentially providing a “basic income” for adults across society. I suggested there is.
“A great future isn’t complicated. We need technology to create more wealth, and we need policies to distribute it fairly,” Altman said in a blog post.
“Everything you need will be cheaper and everyone will have enough money to buy it.”
“Fast Cars and Survival”
In an article for The New Yorker, Altman described himself as a “prepper,” someone who has the preparations and necessities to survive a apocalyptic disaster.
He talked about owning a high performance sports car and renting planes to fly all over California.
In a blog post, Altman said every year on the last day of December, he writes a list of things he wants to accomplish in the next year.
His personal investments include startups working on fusion energy and extending human life.
“I’m very optimistic,” he said on a podcast with TED curator Chris Anderson.
“It’s always easy to scroll down and think how bad things are, but the good things are really good and getting even better,” Altman added.
(This story is not edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)