Meta and IBM form open-source alliance to counter big AI players

NASA, Intel, Yale University and more related bodies are involved.

AI development and concerns about its safety continue to grow at a rapid pace with little regulation in place. The latest industry-based solution to this comes courtesy of IBM and Meta, which have announced the creation of the AI Alliance. Its mission centers on "fostering an open community and enabling developers and researchers to accelerate responsible innovation in AI while ensuring scientific rigor, trust, safety, security, diversity and economic competitiveness." Part of this work will involve efforts to expand the number of open-source AI models — ones with public source code — which runs counter to the private models of companies like OpenAI and Google.

Open-sourcing is a key pillar of the AI Alliance. "We believe it's better when AI is developed openly — more people can access the benefits, build innovative products and work on safety," Nick Clegg, president of Global Affairs at Meta, said in a statement. "The AI Alliance brings together researchers, developers and companies to share tools and knowledge that can help us all make progress whether models are shared openly or not. We're looking forward to working with partners to advance the state-of-the-art in AI and help everyone build responsibly."

In its announcement, the AI Alliance stated that it will "start or enhance" any projects with specific goals, such as developing benchmarks to ensure the responsible creation of AI systems. This step should involve building a catalog of vetted tools and advocating for developers to utilize them.

Among other initiatives, it also plans to focus on safety and transparency, including creating educational resources that inform the public and policymakers about the many facets of AI or launching initiatives and events that highlight ways to develop AI safely.

IBM and Meta are joined by over 50 organizations and educational bodies worldwide, such as Intel, NASA, Cleveland Clinic and Yale University. Notably, OpenAI, creator of ChatGPT, is not one of the founding members.