Normally Twitter has the wild weekends where Musk would make some wild declaration, but this has taken the cake. Whatever was happening with the OpenAI board this weekend has the making to be another Netflix biopic.
On Friday, to the shock of everyone in the tech world, Sam Altman was fired as OpenAI CEO. The news was announced via a blog post that just casually mentioned that they split ways. It also suggested that Altman wasn’t telling the board everything.
After that announcement, co-founder Greg Brockman also left along with many staffers. There were some still at OpenAI would had not quite left and hung around to see what was about to happen.
That’s because the board suddenly does an about-face and starts to scramble to get Altman back. This was due to investor pressure and what was sure to be the rest of the employees that wanted to leave actually doing so.
Unfortunately, it did not work out. It appears that the only way to get Sam Altman back as CEO was for the board to resign. Because they refused to do that, Sam Altman walked. Now, the interim CEO of OpenAI is Emmett Shear, the former CEO of Twitch.
At the time of this writing, it is not clear why they went with Shear, but they guy they had lined up before Shear, Mira Murati, was an ally of Altman. I imagine they wouldn’t want him to stick around. Nor did he.
But that’s not all, folks!
Remember that Microsoft is really close to OpenAI. ChatGPT is built into a lot of Microsoft’s products by way of Copilot. Well, it seems that Microsoft may have missed one announcement at Ignite 2023.
After the public falling out with Altman and OpenAI, Microsoft picked him up almost instantly. He and Greg Brockman are being hired by Microsoft to start an advanced AI research team. This was confirmed by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on Twitter.
I feel this announcement fills in the picture a little more. This is just speculating on my part, but I believe that Altman’s firing on Friday may have been due to some dealings Altman was making with Microsoft. It may have put the board in a weird spot with how close the two companies were getting without much say in the matter.
I’d be willing to bet that it may have everything to do with this new team headed up by Altman. I believe that it was going to exist anyway, but now they have THE AI guy to head it.