A|I: The AI Times – Geoffrey Hinton issues warning, Cohere is soaring

Plus: IBM to pause hiring for jobs that AI could do.

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"Godfather of deep learning" Geoffrey Hinton quits Google to warn against dangers of AI (BETAKIT)

Geoffrey Hinton, who has been internationally distinguished for his work on artificial intelligence, has resigned from Google to warn about the dangers of the technology.

As AI systems continue to be improved exponentially, Hinton worries about how the pace of their development could surpass people’s capabilities to control it.

Cohere raising up to $250-million in Inovia-led deal valuing OpenAI rival at $2-billion (THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

Toronto-based Cohere Inc. is in advanced talks to raise up to $250-million USD from investors in a financing that could value the artificial-intelligence startup at just over $2-billion USD.

Cohere hasn’t attracted the same kinds of headlines as OpenAI but has been recognized as one of the leading crop of companies trying to develop and commercialize generative AI.

Odaia closes $34 million CAD Series B to fix “bottleneck” in drug delivery process (BETAKIT)

Toronto-based software startup Odaia has secured $34 million CAD ($25 million USD) in Series B financing co-led by Threshold Ventures and Monograph Capital, a pair of foreign venture capital investors focused on life sciences and healthtech companies.

Odaia’s software automates the data analysis process using AI and machine learning to collect and analyze phrama industry data sources, which is usually a long, intensive process needed to support sales and marketing efforts.


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OpenAI’s Losses Doubled to $540 Million as It Developed ChatGPT (THE INFORMATION)

OpenAI’s losses roughly doubled to around $540 million USD last year as it developed ChatGPT and hired key employees from Google, sources told The Information.

This previously unreported figure reflects the steep costs of training its machine-learning models during the period before it started selling access to the chatbot. This report also comes about a week after OpenAI reportedly closed a $300 million share sale at a $27 billion to $29 billion valuation.

Canadian venture capital investment in Q1 2023 drops by 82 percent compared to last year (BETAKIT)

In the first quarter of 2023, deals in Canada’s tech ecosystem plummeted. The latest data from Briefed.in shows Canada experienced a 82 percent decline in amount invested compared to the same time last year, and a 67 percent drop in number of deals.

White House Pushes Tech C.E.O.s to Limit Risks of A.I.

The White House on Thursday pushed Silicon Valley chief executives, from companies including but not limited to OpenAI and Google, to limit the risks of artificial intelligence, in the administration’s most visible effort to confront rising questions and calls to regulate the rapidly advancing technology.

BrainBox AI acquires ABB technology in its mission to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in buildings (BETAKIT)

Coupled with a $27 million CAD ($20 million USD) investment, BrainBox AI said it is acquiring ABB’s multi-site retail (MSR) energy management system to further its work on technologies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions from buildings.

Thomson Reuters' revenue beats estimates, plans US$100M AI investment (THE LOGIC)

Thomson Reuters CEO Steve Hasker said the Toronto-based media company plans to invest $100 million USD into artificial intelligence technology annually and will incorporate generative AI into flagship products in the latter half of the year. The company also reported $1.74 billion in Q1 revenue, up four percent from a year ago.

Brightspark seeks to recreate its "home run" exits of Think Dynamics, Radian6 as it launches $120-million fund (BETAKIT)

Brightspark Ventures thinks now is the right time to be investing in early-stage Canadian tech companies as it holds the first close for its latest fund, which has a target size of $120 million CAD.

IBM to Pause Hiring for Jobs That AI Could Do (BNN BLOOMBERG)

Hiring in back-office functions — such as human resources — will be suspended or slowed, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna said in an interview. These non-customer-facing roles amount to roughly 26,000 workers, Krishna said. “I could easily see 30% of that getting replaced by AI and automation over a five-year period.”

Elevate to return for 2023 with Lisa LaFlamme, Dragons’ Den, and Shark Tank stars among speaker lineup (BETAKIT)

Canadian tech conference Elevate is returning for its second year in-person since the COVID 19 pandemic, and will be running from September 26 to 28 in downtown Toronto.

Elevate’s presenters for this year will include Canadian celebrity figures such as Lisa LaFlamme as well as two “dragons” from CBC’s Dragons’ Den: Arlene Dickinson and Wes Hall.

Exclusive: Generative AI startup Runway just raised $100 million at a $1.5 billion valuation from a cloud service provider

Runway, which focuses on AI-powered video and image generation, latest round diverges from conventional tech fundraising efforts by raising capital from a cloud service provider rather than a traditional venture capital firm.

This unconventional approach has become more popular for AI startups, who can leverage these relationships to gain access to cloud computing resources, which have become increasingly rare in the AI boom.

Conference Board of Canada, MaRS launch new innovation group as growth in Canadian ecosystem lags (BETAKIT)

Named the Canadian Centre for the Innovation Economy (CCIE), the group will gather Canadian innovation hubs, institutions, entrepreneurs, governments, corporate partners, and investors to research critical issues facing the innovation community.

When it comes to innovation, Canada has lagged behind, the CBoC found. This new centre is meant to address Canada's "innovation paradox," as Canada's workforce and research fails to deliver long-term success.

Microsoft Is Helping Finance AMD’s Expansion Into AI Chips

Microsoft and AMD are teaming up to offer an alternative to Nvidia Corp., which dominates the market for AI-capable chips called graphics processing units.

The software giant is providing support to bolster AMD’s efforts, including engineering resources, and working with the chipmaker on a homegrown Microsoft processor for AI workloads, code-named Athena.

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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.

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