AI News of the Week: From Funding for Axios to Optimizing Neural Networks


Artificial Intelligence (AI) is rapidly evolving, and it's changing the way we work, live, and interact with technology. With the increasing demand for AI-powered solutions, companies are investing heavily in this field.


In this blog post, we'll cover the latest AI news, including Axios's Software Business raising funds for AI expansion, picking up OpenAI's founding mission, the UK's pro-innovation approach to AI regulation, Elon Musk's call for a pause in creating giant AI "digital minds," and a new method for designing neural networks that are optimally suited for specific tasks. These developments highlight the progress being made in AI and the various ways it's impacting our world.


AI News of the Week


1. Axios HQ Raises $20M to Build AI-Powered Communication Tools with OpenAI


Axios HQ, a software business that helps companies communicate effectively, has raised $20 million in funding to build new artificial intelligence-powered communication tools. The company plans to work with OpenAI, the creators of ChatGPT, to develop tools that will help clients write emails and headlines.


Axios HQ's software, which already uses homegrown AI based on findings from Axios's editorial content, will be further improved by OpenAI's large-language models. The company aims to generate content ideas for executives, automate content for updates to sales and marketing employees, and facilitate communication in different languages. The funding round was led by Glade Brook Capital Partners and Greycroft Partners, valuing Axios HQ at almost $100 million.


2. Mozilla Launches New Startup to Build "Trustworthy" AI


Mozilla has launched a new startup,, with the aim of building "trustworthy" artificial intelligence (AI) that benefits society. This startup plans to create an independent and open-source AI ecosystem that addresses society’s concerns about the technology.


Mozilla's President, Mark Surman, stated in a blog post that the new wave of AI has generated both excitement and apprehension. The company has been asking questions about AI for a while now, such as what could go wrong and how can it be addressed. The rush to get AI solutions to market has been compared to a new "arms race."


OpenAI, which was founded as a nonprofit with the state mission of ensuring that its research makes positive long-term contributions to humanity, has been criticized for straying from this mission. Today, a ChatGPT glitch leaked users' conversation histories, leading to concerns about the trustworthiness of AI.


Microsoft has invested tens of billions in OpenAI and has rolled out integrations with its popular products at a rapid pace, leading some to believe that this partnership has caused OpenAI to take more risks. Elon Musk, who was one of OpenAI's founders, has questioned OpenAI's transformation. Hopefully, will not forget its founding principles and will create an independent, decentralized, and trustworthy AI ecosystem.


3. UK Launches AI Regulation Framework to Promote Innovation and Trust: New AI Sandbox to Test Products and Services


The UK government has introduced a new framework for regulating artificial intelligence (AI) to promote innovation while maintaining public trust. The framework is based on five principles, including Safety, Transparency and explainability, Fairness, Accountability and governance, and Contestability and redress, and will be enforced by existing regulators. The government has allocated £2m ($2.7m) for an AI sandbox to enable businesses to test AI products and services.


Emma Wright, Head of Technology, Data, and Digital at law firm Harbottle & Lewis, welcomed the industry-specific regulation but expressed concern about the lack of regulatory certainty. The UK is the third-highest recipient of venture capital investment in the world and is home to twice as many companies offering AI services and products as any other European country.


The proposals aim to balance the benefits of AI with protections for the public, and have been welcomed by businesses, including DeepMind and Rolls-Royce.


4. Elon Musk and AI Experts Call for Moratorium on Development of Giant Ais


Elon Musk and over 1,000 other artificial intelligence experts have signed an open letter urging for a six-month pause on the creation of “giant” AIs, such as GPT-4, until their capabilities and potential dangers can be properly studied and mitigated.


The Future of Life Institute coordinated the letter, which calls for powerful AI systems to be developed only once their positive effects and manageable risks can be ensured. If researchers do not comply, the letter suggests that governments should step in. The call for strict regulation is in contrast to the UK government’s flagship AI regulation white paper, which the Ada Lovelace Institute criticized for being underpowered and slow to implement.


5. Optimizing AI for Specific Tasks: MIT Researchers Discover Breakthrough Activation Functions


MIT researchers have discovered that neural networks, i.e. a kind of machine learning model, can be designed to be optimal for specific tasks by building them with a particular architecture. They identified a set of activation functions, which are the building blocks that help the model learn complex patterns in the input data, that always use an optimal classification method.


The researchers have published a paper describing these activation functions, which are unconventional and have never been used before. They tested their theory on several classification benchmarking tasks and found that it led to improved performance in many cases. The results could help developers build neural networks that classify data more accurately and select the correct activation function for improved performance in a wide range of application areas.




In conclusion, the world of AI is constantly evolving, and these five news items demonstrate the range of advancements and challenges facing the industry. From the continued expansion of AI software businesses to the development of new approaches to AI regulation, it is clear that AI will continue to have a significant impact on our society in the years to come. As AI technology continues to progress, it is important that we remain vigilant and mindful of the potential risks and benefits, working to ensure that these powerful tools are used for the betterment of all.

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