Demis Hassabis, the head of Google’s AI department, has indicated that the company will invest more than $100 billion over time in developing artificial intelligence (AI) technology. This will make Google the largest AI investor in the world, more than any other tech company, including Microsoft.

At the TED conference in Vancouver, Demis Hassabis was recently asked for his opinion on Microsoft and OpenAI’s plans to establish a data center in the US. This project is estimated to cost up to $100 billion and will include a data center that will house a supercomputer made up of millions of AI chips called Stargate.

“We don’t talk about our specific numbers, but I think we will invest over $100 billion over time,” Hassabis said in response to the question about Stargate.

He provided no further details about Google’s spending plans and said Google parent company Alphabet has better computing power than its competitors, including Microsoft. Hassabis co-founded AI startup DeepMind in 2010 before DeepMind was acquired by Google in 2014.

AI the solution to every problem?

Such an announcement is made as AI has become increasingly popular in recent times. AI has been developing very rapidly over the past year and seems to have become the solution to almost every problem.

That’s one of the reasons why we started working with Google in 2014. We knew that to achieve AGI we would need a lot of computing power. In addition, Google had and still has the most computers,” said Hassabis. Artificial general intelligence (AGI) is the point at which AI achieves human-level knowledge about a range of tasks.

Hassabis further noted that the global interest generated by OpenAI’s ChatGPT showed that the public was willing to accept AI systems, even if they were still imperfect and could contain errors.

Earlier in March this year, Hassabis told the Financial Times that the billions of dollars being poured into AI are reminiscent of the crypto hype, and distract from the “phenomenal” science and research behind its development.

He noted that investment in AI comes with a lot of hype and possibly some anxiety, as he compared it to crypto and similar areas. He added that sentiment has now shifted to AI, which he believes is a bit unfortunate.

Google collaboration with MIT

Yesterday, Google also announced that it has joined forces with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to develop a free course for AI technology. It did this as part of the “Generative AI for educators” initiative.


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