Monday, September 25, 2023

AI Regulations and Why Companies Welcome Them

As the adoption of AI, more directly generative AI, we see more companies calling on the government to step in and step up with regulations. For some this seems counterintuitive. Why would an AI company seek regulation in their own industry that would slow down adoption of their tools right? There are two schools of thought on this.

  • Companies are truly concerned that their tools are being used for nefarious activities (scams, hacking cheating ect)
  • Companies are concerned that the pace of the market means they will become irrelevant before they can make a market impact

As much as we'd like to think that tech companies are altruistic. Historically speaking, this hasn't been the case. So while some of their calls to action might be rooted in a desire to steer things down the 'right path' it is more likely that they are worried about their massive investment and potential returns.

The AI movement/generation is very quickly becoming what the DOT-COM era was. Startups are hitting amazing valuations and being gobbled up by the big boys in tech. Amazon recently spent 4b investing in AI Startup Anthropic. While Google, NVIDIA, Apple and others are not far behind. If AI continues to evolve at the pace it is now, many of those investment could be outdated and loose overall value well before they produce something that is marketable.

As a comparison Siri was first released in 2011, Alexa in 2014 and both are precursors to the large language models we see rapidly advancing today. It too more than a decade for their widespread adoption. Whereas ChatGPT broke into the market this past year and set off a firestorm and created a free for all in the market and development space. So while we are seeing companies actively petition for some government oversight, what we aren't seeing is those very same companies exhibiting a measure of self control!


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