A|I: The AI Times – Canadian leaders sign Gen AI code of conduct, Shopify’s CEO wants fewer “referees”

François-Philippe Champagne, Canada’s minister of innovation, science, and industry.
Plus: Amazon rachets AI race with up to $4 billion investment in Anthropic.

The AI Times is a weekly newsletter covering the biggest AI, machine learning, big data, and automation news from around the globe.

If you want to read A|I before anyone else, make sure to subscribe using this form.

Subscribe to BetaKit’s AI Times newsletter

* indicates required

Canada launches voluntary code of conduct for the responsible use of AI (BETAKIT)

Cohere, a competitor of ChatGPT creator OpenAI, among other Canadian AI companies announced signing on to Canada’s new voluntary artificial intelligence (AI) code of conduct.

François-Philippe Champagne, the country’s minister of innovation, science and industry, announced Canada’s Voluntary Code of Conduct on the Responsible Development and Management of Advanced Generative AI Systems, which is effective immediately.

Not everyone is onside with the new code. In a statement on X, Tobi Lutke, Shopify’s CEO, called the code of conduct “another case of EFRAID,” and wrote: “I won’t support it. We don’t need more referees in Canada. We need more builders. Let other countries regulate while we take the more courageous path and say “come build here.”

Amazon steps up AI race with up to $4 billion deal to invest in Anthropic (REUTERS)

Amazon on Monday said it will invest up to $4 billion in cash in the high-profile startup Anthropic, in its effort to compete with growing cloud rivals on artificial intelligence.

Amazon's employees and cloud customers will gain early access to technology from Anthropic as part of the deal, which they can infuse into their businesses.

The Québec-IBM Discovery Accelerator now has its quantum computer (BETAKIT)

The Platform for Digital and Quantum Innovation of Québec (PINQ²), along with IBM, has announced the “inauguration” of an IBM Quantum System One at IBM Bromont.

The installation of the quantum computer marks a major step of the Québec-IBM Discovery Accelerator, which launched in February 2022 with a focus on quantum computing, artificial intelligence, semiconductors, and high-performance computing.

Do you have an M&A strategy in place?

TechExit.io is Canada's premier event for industry players wanting to buy or sell technology companies. Gain insights from major exit and acquisition success stories, and connect with fellow tech leaders, investors, and advisors – the ones that make the deals happen. Don’t miss this opportunity on October 25, 2023, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

“The value at TechExit.io is hearing on the ground stories from founders who have sold their companies and being surrounded by a network of people who know the upsides and downsides of selling a company.”
– Jack Newton, CEO & Founder of Clio

Become M&A Ready

OpenAI Seeks New Valuation of Up to $90 Billion in Sale of Existing Shares (THE WALL STREET JOURNAL)

As ChatGPT is given a voice, its maker OpenAI is talking to investors about a share sale that would value the artificial-intelligence startup at between $80 billion to $90 billion, roughly triple its level earlier this year.

The deal is expected to allow employees to sell their existing shares as opposed to the company issuing new ones to raise additional capital.

UK-based Captain AI will relocate to Canada after closing $2.1 million USD to serve restaurants in North America (BETAKIT)

Restaurant logistics startup Captain AI has secured $2.1 million USD in seed funding to fuel its go-to-market efforts in Canada and the United States (US).

Captain AI, which was founded by Canadians but initially launched in the United Kingdom (UK), has spent six years quietly building an artificial intelligence (AI) platform designed to help restaurant chains manage and improve their in-house food delivery operations.

The UN’s top tech official discusses AI, bringing the world together and what keeps him up at night (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

With a U.N. advisory group on AI set to convene this fall, the world organization’s top tech-policy official, Amandeep Gill, sat down with The Associated Press to talk about the hopes, concerns and questions surrounding AI.

Here are excerpts from the interview, edited for length and clarity.

Neo Financial, Float, and Cohere headline LinkedIn’s sixth annual list of Canada’s top 15 startups (BETAKIT)

In its blog post, LinkedIn highlighted difficulties faced by startups this year, such as venture capital deals in Canada dropping by 71 percent on an annual basis in the first quarter, higher interest rates, and the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank.

Despite that, the list of Canada's top 15 startups reflects the resilience of FinTech and artificial intelligence (AI) startups, with just over half of the ranked startups involved in either of those sectors.

AI pioneer Sutton partners with ex-Meta executive to counter industry ‘groupthink’ (THE LOGIC)

Richard Sutton, considered one of the grandfathers of modern reinforcement learning, is partnering with AI startup Keen Technologies in a bid to address some of the fundamental questions in the field. John Carmack, a renowned video-game programmer and computer scientist, founded Keen, which is backed by the likes of Shopify's Tobi Lütke and Sequoia Capital.

Elevate announces CIX acquisition and new $2-million innovation challenge for youth mental health (BETAKIT)

Elevate kicked off this year's tech and innovation festival on its main stage by announcing its acquisition of the Canadian Innovation Exchange (CIX) and a partnership with MaRS and Kids Help Phone to launch a $2-million innovation challenge aimed at improving youth mental health.

Additionally, the inaugural $450,000 Elevate Women + Pitch Prize at the Elevate Festival went to Waterloo, Ont.-based healthtech and AI startup Medreddie.

Medreddie’s AI-powered platform provides insights into the healthcare supply chain, improving patient outcomes and health system performance, according to the startup.

Jasper, an Early Generative AI Winner, Cuts Internal Valuation as Growth Slows (THE INFORMATION)

Jasper AI, an early darling of the generative artificial intelligence boom, has cut the internal value of its common shares 20%, according to former employees who were notified by the company.

The drop in Jasper’s internal valuation could indicate that the growth of its AI-powered writing tool for marketers has slowed since the company raised venture funding at a $1.5 billion valuation in June.

Front Row Ventures closes over-subscribed $5.5-million CAD pan-Canadian fund (BETAKIT)

Front Row Ventures, the university student-led fund that invests in student-led startups, has closed $5.5 million for its first pan-Canadian fund.

Historically, Front Row Ventures has focused on investing in early-stage, student-led Canadian startups. The fund received $600,000 in 2017 from Real Ventures to invest in 24 student-led startups over the next four years.

The new WGA contract will change how Hollywood works (THE VERGE)

On the AI side of things, the WGA got essentially what it's been demanding from the start. According to the summary of the contract, AI will not be able to write or rewrite literary material, and AI-generated material will not be able to be used as a source material. So an exec won't be able to ask ChatGPT to come up with a story and ask writers to turn it into a script that the exec owns the rights to.

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at alexriehl.com or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

0 replies on “A|I: The AI Times – Canadian leaders sign Gen AI code of conduct, Shopify’s CEO wants fewer “referees””