The fact is that the development of advanced AI systems, such as ChatGPT, requires enormous technical resources. Some projects have already run into obstacles due to a lack of capital and expertise in the field. So to avoid that fate, one of EleutherAI's research teams is creating its nonprofit EleutherAI Institute, which will be funded by donations and grants from supporters including AI startups Hugging Face and Stability AI, former GitHub CEO Nat Friedman, Lambda Labs and Canva.
The EleutherAI team was formed a few years ago as an association of developers working on open source AI research. Its founders, Connor Leahy, Leo Gao, and Sid Black, wrote the code and collected the data needed to create a machine learning model close to the OpenAI GPT-3 text-generating model that was much written about at the time. Over the past 18 months, EleutherAI members have co-authored 28 research papers, trained dozens of models, and produced ten codebases.
Formalizing as an organization will allow the EleutherAI Institute to form a full-time staff and participate in longer and larger projects than would be possible as a volunteer group. Previously, EleutherAI has focused more on large language models architecturally similar to ChatGPT. The organization will likely continue to do so, but also plans to devote more resources to ethics, interpretability, and alignment work.
Well, let's see what direction the EleutherAI Foundation eventually takes.
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