The Gradient
The Gradient: Perspectives on AI
2023 in AI, with Nathan Benaich
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2023 in AI, with Nathan Benaich

A roundup of what happened in AI this year
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In episode 104 of The Gradient Podcast, Daniel Bashir speaks to Nathan Benaich.

Nathan is Founder and General Partner at Air Street Capital, a VC firm focused on investing in AI-first technology and life sciences companies. Nathan runs a number of communities focused on AI including the Research and Applied AI Summit and leads Spinout.fyi to improve the creation of university spinouts. Nathan co-authors the State of AI Report.

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Outline:

  • (00:00) Intro

  • (02:00) Updates in Nathan World — Air Street’s second fund, spinouts,

    • (07:30) Events: Research and Applied AI Summit, State of AI Report launches

  • (09:50) The State of AI: main messages, the increasing role of subject matter experts

    • Research

      • (14:13) Open and closed-source

      • (17:55) Benchmarking and evaluation, small/large models and industry verticals

      • (21:10) “Vibes” in LLM evaluation

      • (24:00) Codegen models, personalized AI, curriculum learning

      • (26:20) The exhaustion of human-generated data, lukewarm content, synthetic data

      • (29:50) Opportunities for AI applications in the natural sciences

      • (35:15) Reinforcement Learning from Human Feedback and alternatives

    • (38:30) Industry

      • (39:00) ChatGPT and productivity

      • (42:37) General app wars, ChatGPT competitors

      • (45:50) Compute—demand, supply, competition

      • (50:55) Export controls and geopolitics

      • (54:45) Startup funding and compute spend

    • (59:15) Politics

      • (59:40) Calls for regulation, regulatory divergence

    • (1:04:40) AI safety

      • (1:07:30) Nathan’s perspective on regulatory approaches

      • (1:12:30) The UK’s early access to frontier models, standards setting, regulation difficulties

      • (1:17:20) Jailbreaking, constitutional AI, robustness

    • (1:20:50) Predictions!

      • (1:25:00) Generative AI misuse in elections and politics (and, this prediction coming true in Bangladesh)

      • (1:26:50) Progress on AI governance

    • (1:30:30) European dynamism

    • (1:35:08) Outro

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The Gradient
The Gradient: Perspectives on AI
Interviews with various people who research, build, or use AI, including academics, engineers, artists, entrepreneurs, and more.