Countries and global institutions must work together to harmonise efforts to tackle issues around artificial intelligence (AI), and India has a major part to play in this conversation, OpenAI chief strategy officer Jason Kwon said on Saturday.
“AI is a global issue, and we need a global approach to govern it,” he said.
Countries have historically come together to address problems of health, trade and natural resources, he said, adding that they now have to similarly join forces through institutions that underpin the international order and rule of law to coordinate in the matter of AI governance.
“We want to work closely with you to figure out a path forward,” he said.
Kwon also announced that OpenAI will hold a number of developer summits in India this year. It plans to foster collaboration between Silicon Valley developers and local developers that will “put us on a path for building the tools and define our future”.
“Our plan is to convene developers around the country to work alongside OpenAI’s product leaders on some of the most difficult challenges in AI,” he said.
Kwon said the country has the world’s largest developer community, some of the most impressive talent in the field, a track record of developing extraordinary technology businesses and a relentless focus on competing on the world stage.
“India has the key ingredients of being one of the world’s leaders in AI,” he said, adding that OpenAI wants to continue to invest in the developer community here.
OpenAI, he said, also understood the role that ChatGPT can play in closing one of the main barriers in the startups segment – the demand for code.
“Startups understand market gaps and build innovative products to fill them. Tools like ChatGPT help accelerate startups and unlock new ones in several ways,” Kwon said.
On his India visit, he will be meeting with entrepreneurs who are creating AI-powered products that will enable India to experience the value of the technology, he said.
In the private sector, AI can make completing tasks 25% faster and improve quality by 40%, Kwon said, citing research. It reduces the cost of intelligence by making writing code faster, freeing up engineers for other tasks, and simplifies computing interfaces and makes them more accessible globally, he said.
“When you break down these barriers, you can make it possible to access more services that are critical to human welfare in the digital age,” he said.
He also said that unlocking the potential of AI requires an “intense focus” on safety and that safety and product development are intertwined rather than separate.
“AI safety must be globalised,” Kwon said, adding that safety features must be ensured across countries and languages.
OpenAI has seen “promising early results” with a safeguarding tool it is developing ahead of elections in several countries such as the US and India to address fake or inaccurate images, he said.
More than a year after the introduction of OpenAI’s generative AI platform ChatGPT to the world, its transformative power has become visible, according to Kwon. He said ChatGPT has helped people experience AI not as behind-the-scenes abstraction but as a real and tangible tool.
It has helped people solve real problems in previously unimaginable ways, he said, adding that around 90% of Fortune 500 companies now build using OpenAI products.
“Reducing language barriers like this is one of the superpowers of large language models,” Kwon said, pointing to GPT-powered farmer chatbot by Digital Green, which helps farmers in multiple languages to navigate climate change, implement best practices and bring their crops to market.
The bot delivers information in languages including Hindi, Kannada and Assamese, and reduces the cost of traditional extension services by 99%, Kwon said.
Large language models can also build on the Indian government’s national language translation initiative Bhashini, he said.
In the field of healthcare, ChatGPT has been used by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to facilitate communication with frontline workers to improve care for pregnant and postpartum women, Kwon said.
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