Elon Musk’s Artificial Intelligence Startup xAI Will Merge With X After Releasing ‘Rebellious’ Grok Chatbot

Tech billionaire Elon Musk's artificial intelligence startup xAI will be integrated into his social media platform X, previously known as Twitter, Musk said on Sunday.

The move comes some six months after Musk was one of the signatories of a call to suspend the development of artificial intelligence for six months. However, his own AI company xAI was founded around the same time.

Meanwhile, xAI released its first AI model, a bot named Grok, after making it available to all X Premium+ subscribers on Friday.

"A unique and fundamental advantage of Grok is that it has real-time knowledge of the world via the X platform. It will also answer spicy questions that are rejected by most other AI systems," the xAI team announced on X.

Grok is also designed to answer questions "with a bit of wit and has a rebellious streak, so please don't use it if you hate humor," the team said.

X, which Musk owns, is separate from xAI, but the companies work closely together. xAI also works with his electric car maker Tesla and other companies.

UK hosts first global AI safety summit


Grok is initially only available for some users in the United States. As a prerequisite, they must be subscription customers of Musk's social media platform X, in the most expensive tier, which costs $16 (€14.90) per month in the US and €19 per month in Germany.

In 2015, Musk co-founded OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT, which has created a frenzy for generative AI technology around the world but stepped down from the board in 2018.

Musk has been warning for years that artificial intelligence could be dangerous for humanity. In the spring, he was one of the signatories of an open letter calling for the development of software with AI to be paused for six months in order to create a regulatory framework during this time.

Last week Musk told British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak that he thought AI was "the most disruptive force in history." The technology will be able to "do everything" and make employment as we know it today a thing of the past, Musk speculated at the first global AI Safety Summit, in Bletchley Park, England.

In a broadcast interview with UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Thursday, Elon Musk told Sunak at the close of the AI Safety Summit last week, "I think we are seeing the most disruptive force in history; we will have something that for the first time is smarter than the smartest human...There will come a point where no job is needed."

This startling statement quickly became viral online, and re-ignited what is becoming an age-old debate: will AI really eliminate the need for jobs?

Yes...and no.

After all, the global AI Safety Summit hosted by the UK—the first of its kind—in which global tech business leaders and heads of 28 countries were delegates, was intended to bring awareness and address the key global threats posed by AI. The focus was not merely on the kind used for specific tasks (such as ChatGPT), but frontier AI, the supercharged artificial intelligence of the future that encompasses foundational models with the potential for dangerous capabilities.

Some of the likely risks highlighted by the delegates included intentional and unintentional misuse, disinformation, and negative impact on cybersecurity and the labor market. In the subsequent policy paper, the Summit's delegates noted that we should work globally towards a "human-centric, trustworthy and responsible AI."

Having humans at the center, therefore, means creating an environment where artificial intelligence is run by humans and works for humans, not the other way around. So while some jobs will no longer be needed, others will remain or be created.

Artificial intelligence has already made ground-breaking shifts and caused major disruptions to industries including justice, retail, marketing, transportation, media, and the biosciences. According to the World Economic Forum's Future of Jobs Report 2020, an estimated 85 million jobs are predicted to be impacted by a shift "in the division of labor between humans and machines, while 97 million new roles may emerge that are more adapted to the new division of labor between humans, machines, and algorithms."

This indicates that although AI has the potential to eliminate many roles, it also promises the advantage of not only replacing them but also adding an extra 12 million jobs to the labor market, in addition to boosting the economy.

Some of the jobs that are most easily susceptible to being completely replaced by AI include customer service, executive assistant and administrative jobs, graphic design, data entry roles, transcription services, and market research analysis.

However, while the loss of these roles will be keenly felt by those who have built entire careers and fortunes around them, the key thing to remember here is that the labor market is evolving; and as with any dramatic market shift underpinned by technological advancements, there will be significant disruption which will be uncomfortable and potentially result in millions of job losses. But to survive this evolution, one should prepare themselves and prove their careers to adapt to the changes imposed by AI.

AI has already begun to create and popularize previously unheard-of roles, which will become more of a necessity as the strategic initiatives of the AI Safety Summit are implemented. Some of these in-demand roles include AI research scientist, prompt engineer, deep learning engineer, AI chatbot developer, AI ethics and bias analyst, director of responsible AI, and AI ethics program manager.

Beyond technology itself, it's essential to recognize the fact that technology is not the answer to all problems. There are fields that demand the human touch and cannot be completely replaced by artificial intelligence, although they may assist in delivering these roles more efficiently.

The job market appetite is increasing for roles that require leadership skills and strategic problem-solving. For example, people managers, program managers, early years practitioners, and doctors will have a very difficult time being replaced by AI—it's virtually impossible. These all require some aspect of human intelligence, empathy, and intuition that cannot be mimicked or left to technology alone.

As humans, we thrive on work as part of our daily lives. Work is more than a means of survival, it's essential to meaning in life. Scientific research demonstrates that we work for reasons other than a salary. It boosts our mental health and is part of the way we are wired to desire purpose, fulfillment, satisfaction, and pride through making a contribution and working with others, which in turn, promotes happiness.

One of the most significant benefits of artificial intelligence is its boost to productivity, and performing "boring" repetitive tasks for you, which in turn, free you up to endless possibilities and creativity in your work. Professionals will begin to enjoy doing more meaningful work as the mundane is removed and their human creativity is supercharged.

Bearing this in mind, it is critical to focus your attention now on three key aspects of personal development:

  • Stay aware of ongoing developments within AI—they are progressing at a phenomenal rate.
  • Explore other career possibilities so you are not left out of work.
  • Learn how to use AI to augment your work.

Will Elon Musk's vision of a world without jobs become reality? Most likely not. However, the role of work in our lives will certainly evolve as technology advances.

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