OpenAI Employees Say Firm's Chief Scientist Has Been Making Strange Spiritual Claims

Why does it feel like everybody at OpenAI has lost their mind? In what’s arguably turning into the hottest AI story of the year, former OpenAI CEO Sam Altman was ousted by the rest of the company’s nonprofit board on Friday, leading to a seemingly endless drama cycle that’s included hundreds of staffers threatening to quit en masse if the board doesn’t reinstate him. A key character in the spectacle has been OpenAI chief scientist and board member Ilya Sutskever — who, according to The Atlantic, likes to burn effigies and lead ritualistic chants at the company — and appears to have been one of the main drivers behind Altman’s ousting. But clearly, he almost immediately regretted his decision in a bizarre attempt to save face just days later. “I never intended to harm OpenAI,” he tweeted Monday morning, not long after Microsoft, which owns a 49 percent stake in the company, offered Altman a CEO position. “I deeply regret my participation in the board’s actions.” The entire situation is baffling. OpenAI, which is quickly approaching a $90 billion valuation, has been thrown into a deepening crisis by its overarching non-profit arm. In the meantime, we’re getting a closer than ever peek at what makes OpenAI’s power players tick. Case in point, Sutskever has established himself as an esoteric  “spiritual leader” at the company, per The Atlantic, cheering on the company’s efforts to realize artificial general intelligence (AGI), a hazy and ill-defined state when AI models have become as or…OpenAI Employees Say Firm's Chief Scientist Has Been Making Strange Spiritual Claims

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