And they have a history.
Elon Musk may be trying to poach Ilya Sutskever, one of his fellow OpenAI cofounders, to work for his bizarre anti-woke AI venture.
In response to a tweet from the Whole Mars Catalog blog about Sutskever's strange limbo at the firm following his backing of the plot to oust CEO Sam Altman, Musk seemed to suggest that he could see the Russian-born scientist working at xAI.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 9, 2023
This isn't the first time Musk has expressed accolades, in his way, for Sutskever.
"Ilya has a good moral compass and does not seek power," the SpaceX CEO tweeted soon after Sutskever and two of his fellow board members fired Altman. "He would not take such drastic action unless he felt it was absolutely necessary."
In the interim, however, things haven't exactly been great for Sutskever since he maneuvered to remove Altman ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. The would-be coup failed, Altman returned, and Sutskever ended up stepping down from OpenAI's board of directors.
According to in-the-know sources cited by Business Insider, the chief scientist's future at the firm remains awfully unclear following his backstabbing.
"Once trust is broken," one former OpenAI staffer told the website, "it cannot be regained."
Be that as it may — and likely is — Musk does have a track record for poaching the AI doomer in question.
As biographer Walter Isaacson wrote in his hit book about the billionaire published earlier this year, Musk convinced Sutskever to jump ship from Google back in 2015, offering him a $1.9 million salary and a starting bonus to help him and Altman cofound OpenAI.
That poaching apparently ticked off his former friend Larry Page, who was the CEO of Google at the time.
"Larry felt betrayed and was really mad at me for personally recruiting Ilya," Musk recounted to Isaacson, "and he refused to hang out with me anymore."
Though there wasn't a ton of detail about it in the book, part of Sutskever's move from Google to OpenAI had to do with the former's lax approach to AI safety — which seems to be the same reason he tried to oust Altman in the first place.
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