A|I: The AI Times – Microsoft and OpenAI team up to build $100-billion AI supercomputer

Plus: Feds pledge $2B to bolster AI compute, startups, and safety.

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Microsoft and OpenAI Plot $100 Billion Stargate AI Supercomputer

Executives at Microsoft and OpenAI have been drawing up plans for a data center project that would contain a supercomputer with millions of specialized server chips to power OpenAI’s artificial intelligence, according to three people who have been involved in the private conversations about the proposal. The project could cost as much as $100 billion, according to a person who spoke to OpenAI CEO Sam Altman about it and a person who has viewed some of Microsoft’s initial cost estimates.

(The Information)


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Federal government commits $2.4 billion to AI compute, startups, and safety through Budget 2024

Today, Canada’s Liberal government unveiled a $2.4-billion CAD package of measures designed to boost the country’s artificial intelligence sector.

In its announcement, which Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made at Scale AI’s offices in Montréal, the Government of Canada noted that while the nation has a “world-leading AI ecosystem,” other countries have been racing to catch up and made big investments in AI. “To maintain Canada’s competitive edge, and secure good paying jobs and job security for generations of young Canadians, we must raise the bar.”

Through its upcoming 2024 budget, the federal government plans to pump $2 billion into increasing the computing power available to the nation’s AI researchers, startups, and scaleups.

Separately, the federal government and Québec earmarked $16 million to create an AI computing cluster at Université Laval.

The investment is intended to support the purchase of the computing infrastructure needed for Université Laval to host the Pan-Canadian AI Compute Environment platform.


OPINION: With artificial intelligence, the tech world must shed its cavalier attitude

With the development and fast improvement of artificial-intelligence capabilities in the past 15 years, a worrying, long-standing tech approach has gained further traction.

“Ask for forgiveness, not for permission”: The phrase, attributed to the late U.S. admiral, Grace Hopper, has long been a mantra in Silicon Valley. Innovators can’t waste time waiting to clarify regulatory requirements, let alone for ethical considerations about their products. New technologies evolve quickly and are naturally beneficial, and any bureaucratic delay is a cost for humankind. Breaking things allows moving faster. This narrative, in fact, predates the digital economy.

(The Globe and Mail)

Cohere introduces new LLM for businesses alongside Microsoft Azure collaboration

Toronto-based artificial intelligence startup Cohere, an enterprise-focused competitor of ChatGPT creator OpenAI, has unveiled its newest large language model, Command R+.

Cohere said the new LLM is built off of its recently debuted Command R while further improving its performance to make it competitive with more expensive LLMs on “key business-critical capabilities.”

Microsoft concurrently announced that Command R+ will be integrated into its Azure AI model catalogue through a new collaboration with Cohere.


SEC’s AI washing charges ‘a marketing stunt’: Delphia CEO

New reporting from The Logic indicates that Delphia’s CEO called a recent SEC announcement ruling against the startup a “marketing stunt” in response to questions posed by a Discord user referencing this BetaKit story.

On March 18, the SEC alleged that Delphia made “false and misleading” statements in its SEC filings, in a press release, and on its website regarding its use of AI and machine learning that incorporated client data into its investment process.

(The Logic)

Cohere’s Aidan Gomez talks scaling AI for enterprise, Vinod Khosla explores risk-taking at CIX Summit 2024

Following the opening remarks at CIX Summit 2024, the CIX Innovator of The Year award was given to Aidan Gomez, CEO of Toronto-based Cohere.

Gomez joined Inovia Capital’s Kory Jeffrey and KPMG Canada’s Seamus Blackmore for a discussion on the growth of Cohere and the future of artificial intelligence. During the fireside chat, Gomez laid out the specific attributes that make Cohere different.


With $7.75 million CAD, new CEO, Boston office, TrojAI looks to expand operations

Enterprise artificial intelligence security startup TrojAI has appointed a new CEO and secured $7.76 million CAD ($5.75 million USD) in funding as it expands its footprint out of the Maritimes.

TrojAI said the funding will support its product development, sales, and marketing efforts as it expands its operations with a new office in Boston.

Leading these expansion efforts is new CEO Lee Weiner, who replaces TrojAI co-founder James Stewart as he shifts to the CTO position.


Amazon offers free credits for startups to use AI models including Anthropic

Amazon Web Service has expanded its free credits program for startups to cover the costs of using major AI models, the company told Reuters in an interview, as it looks to boost the market share of its AI platform Bedrock.

In a move to attract startup customers, Amazon now allows its cloud credits to cover the use of models from other providers including Anthropic, Meta, Mistral AI, and Cohere.


BetaKit Live: How Coinbase is growing crypto adoption in Canada

Coinbase announced it has obtained restricted dealer status from the Canadian Securities Administrators, making it the first international and largest cryptocurrency exchange to be registered in Canada.

In partnership with Coinbase, BetaKit is happy to present a live-streamed fireside discussion tackling the company’s focus on growing the opportunity for digital assets in Canada, the future of money, and Canada’s innovation opportunity.


‘The machine did it coldly’: Israel used AI to identify 37,000 Hamas targets

The Israeli military’s bombing campaign in Gaza used a previously undisclosed AI-powered database that at one stage identified 37,000 potential targets based on their apparent links to Hamas, according to intelligence sources involved in the war.

Israel’s use of powerful AI systems in its war on Hamas has entered uncharted territory for advanced warfare, raising a host of legal and moral questions, and transforming the relationship between military personnel and machines.

(The Guardian)

Hard Knocks: Marcus Daniels on creating impact over activity in #CDNtech

In the first entry of Hard Knocks, a four-part series presented by Mantle where key players from Canadian tech share insights, war stories, and lessons learned, Highline Beta CEO Marcus Daniels believes Canadian tech is facing an “Old Yeller” moment.

Well, not entirely. To Daniels, Canada does a fantastic job cheering for its triumphs, even those he considers to be “superficial wins.” However, he believes the real test comes when things aren’t going well, and it’s time to pull the plug.


This AI Startup Wants You to Talk to Houses, Cars, and Factories

We’ve all been astonished at how chatbots seem to understand the world. But what if they were truly connect to the real world? What if the dataset behind the chat interface was physical reality itself, captured in real time by interpreting the input of billions of sensors sprinkled around the globe? That’s the idea behind Archetype AI, an ambitious startup launching today. As cofounder and CEO Ivan Poupyrev puts it, “Think of ChatGPT, but for physical reality.”


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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