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Microsoft partners with Elon Musk-backed researcher on AI

OpenAI also will use Microsoft's Azure cloud computing software to run its experiments in artificial intelligence.


Harry Shum (left), Microsoft AI and research group executive vice president, and Sam Altman, co-chair of OpenAI, will be working together on artificial intelligence.


Microsoft has formed a partnership with OpenAI, an Elon Musk-backed company, to research artificial intelligence.

The two companies will focus on "making significant contributions to advance the field of AI" and will work on their "mutual goal of using AI to tackle some of the world's most challenging problems," Microsoft said Tuesday in a blog post.

Microsoft added that it is "committed to democratizing AI and making it accessible to everyone."

AI is one of the hottest trends in tech right now, fueled by powerful chips, fast networks and the massive trail of data we all leave behind us. Everyone from the biggest names in tech, like Apple and Google, to the smallest startups are focusing on making software smarter. The vision is making devices think and behave like humans.

OpenAI is a nonprofit research organization co-founded by Musk, Y Combinator's Sam Altman, Greg Brockman and former Google research scientist Ilya Sutskever. The company said it will use Microsoft's Azure cloud computing technology to run "most" of its large-scale experiments.

"One of the most important factors for accelerating our progress is accessing more and faster computers; this is particularly true for emerging AI technologies like reinforcement learning and generative models," OpenAI said.