Who is Openai, the creator of Chatgpt and Dall-E?, Who is Sam Altman, the man behind Chatgpt? | Les Echos Start

Who is Sam Altman, the man behind Chatgpt

You have surely heard of Chatgpt, artificial intelligence capable of writing a cover letter, a song or a cinema scenario, but do you know Sam Altman, the co-founder of the company ? We tell you everything – or almost – on this success story so American.

Who is Openai, the creator of Chatgpt and Dall-E ?

For several months, only one company has returned regularly in the news: Openai. And for good reason, since it is the company that develops Chatgpt and Dall-E, two artificial intelligence tools that have met with monster success.

This logo, you have probably had to see it, if you have already used or heard of chatgpt. This is in fact the Openai logo, the company that created Chatgpt and its language model, GPT. Who hides behind Openai, one of the most powerful artificial intelligence companies in the world ?

Our files on Chatgpt

We invite you to read our different files about Chatgpt, to find out more about the chatbot:

  • Chatgpt: its functioning, its potential and its dangers … the ultimate guide to understand everything
  • How to use chatgpt and what is it for ?
  • We asked 8 Chatgpt tech questions: a stunning AI, but not without limits
  • Google Bard vs bing chat vs chatgpt: what is the best generative ?
  • Chatgpt alternatives: it’s not just the Openai chatbot that exists

Openai, what is it ?

Openai presents himself as ” A IA research and deployment company “Aiming to democratize this technology. The company was initially a non -profit association, founded in December 2015, by two presidents: Sam Altman and the Multimillionaire Elon Musk, CEO among others of Tesla, Twitter and Neuralink, as well as several other members, all from the tech. Initially, the latter had to invest $ 1 billion in total: he will not have invested it ” that ” 100 million. The reason: after results not good enough according to him, Musk wanted to take control of Openai, which was refused to him by other founding members. He therefore left the Board of Directors in February 2018.

In 2019, it became a capped lucrative company: that is to say that the company can generate profits, but only at a certain level. A decision potentially due from Elon Musk and, by extension, of his investments.

The double interest of this status for OpenAi is to attract investors wishing a return to the company, while limiting the potential drifts of the Dividends race. A ” capped lucrative “, But with a ceiling all the same very high: a hundred times the value of the initial investment.

How was the company created ?

Sociologist Antoine Goujon tells the story of the creation of Openai in AOC. Elon Musk and Sam Altman commissioned Greg Brockman, former Technical Director of Stripe (an online payment company for businesses) to build a team of specialists in artificial intelligence, mixing engineers and researchers.

To convince them, Openai, or rather its founding members, has tried the transparency of what was at the time an organization, especially in terms of scientific research. In early 2017, Openai had 45 people, but today it has changed, since they are nearly 400.

Openai’s philosophy: from openness to regulation

So in its infancy, Openai wanted to be opened (it is in the name of the entity): publication of programs sources, results of scientific research broadcast, etc. But, since 2015, Openai has pivoted in her philosophy: if the opening is not over, she has undergone a brake.

The company recognized it recently: ” We were wrong in our initial reflection on the opening, and we have changed our mind: we no longer think that we have to spread everything (although we put certain things in open source and that we plan to do so ‘Avenir), but rather that you have to find a way to securely share access to systems and their advantages. An important change philosophically, but which aims to be safe: Chatgpt and Dall-E, the two most important tools of the company, can be used for unfair purposes. By their power, Openai’s responsibility is even greater.

OPENAI finances ?

Openai’s departure cash flow was a billion dollars, 100 million of which had been brought by Elon Musk and a certain part by Amazon Web Services, the accommodation and accommodation division cloud computing Amazon. But it was in 2019 that everything really accelerates: Microsoft then invests $ 1 billion in what has become a company.

Then, with the insane success of Chatgpt, Microsoft and Openai extended their partnership in early 2023, with an investment from the Redmond firm of several billion dollars officially. The main rumor spoke about ten billion dollars, according to information from Semaor. Microsoft would recover 75 % of the profits from Openai, until they have reimbursed these ten billion dollars. Although the firm would not have ” that »49 % of the shares, 49 % being to other investors and 2 % at the OPENAI non -profit Foundation.

Today, however, we do not know precisely what is OpenAi shareholding. The promotion of this company is not known publicly either. But, during a round table at 300 million dollars documented by Techcrunch In April 2023, the valuation was evaluated between 27 and 29 billion dollars.

Openai’s main artificial intelligence products

Openai’s popularity and power are mainly based on two AI tools: Chatgpt and Dall-E.

Chatgpt and GPT, its language model

Difficult to present it to someone for the first time as the chatbot was talked about. What Openai has developed is more GPT, the big language model (or LLM in English), a sort of chatgpt engine. The chatbot allows you to answer a whole bunch of questions, without really understanding what it says.

In fact, GPT is essentially an algorithm that predicts the word to follow according to a given context and in the words generated previously. This is why it cannot be said that he has the reflection of a human being (or even a living being).


Dall-e mainly was talked about about him, about a year ago, when Dall-E 2 was published, before seeing his popularity being caught by Chatgpt, but also by his competitors, like Midjourney or Stable Diffusion. This is an artificial intelligence program of image generation.

Using a textual description that is provided, Dall-E is able to generate images drawing inspiration from a gigantic database with which he was trained. For ” to understand “The indications that he is given, it is based on GPT, a model of language also used in Chatgpt.

The other innovations of Openai

However, Openai is not a company known only for Chatgpt. We also owe him a microscope, an AI tool for visualization of neural networks or Whisper, a voice recognition model.

Other models of artificial intelligence are developing within the company. This is the case of point-e, which allows you to generate 3D objects and its successor, Shap-e.

Finally, we can mention Jukebox, described as ” A neural network that generates music, including rudimentary song, in the form of raw audio in a variety of genres and styles of artists. »The model was published in 2020, but since then nothing.

What future for Openai ?

With recent investments made by Microsoft and the trend in artificial intelligence in the new technology industry, the future seems prosperous for OpenAi.

One might think that the company already has a next version of its language model used by Chatgpt in its boxes. Although for the moment, Openai claims not to work on GPT-5.

Towards general artificial intelligence

Openai believes hard as iron since the start in the ” general artificial intelligence (AG). We can define this term simply by an AI capable of learning and performing any task. For the moment, no AI model can be qualified as such, but the company strives to tend towards this. She even imagines an AI that could be smarter than the human brain. But she sees it with a good eye: the act would have ” the potential to give everyone incredible new capacities; We can imagine a world in which each of us would have access to help for almost all cognitive tasks, which would considerably multiply the strength of human ingenuity and creativity », Can we read in a recent blog article.

The company explains that ” As we create increasingly powerful systems, we want to deploy them and acquire experience in their functioning in the real world. A declaration that remains vague, but which makes it possible to understand that Optai wishes to integrate its tools and its AI into the uses of humans to go beyond that simple research and demonstration. OPENAI specifies wanting to be more and more cautious in launching new AI models, especially since generative artificial intelligences will most likely be regulated more strongly by courts around the world.

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Who is Sam Altman, the man behind Chatgpt ?

You have surely heard of Chatgpt, artificial intelligence capable of writing a cover letter, a song or a cinema scenario, but do you know Sam Altman, the co-founder of the company ? We tell you everything – or almost – on this success story so American.

This is only the start for Chatgpt.

Posted on Jan. 18. 2023 at 1:00 p.m

Born in Chicago in 1985, he joined the prestigious University of Stanford in San Francisco, which he left in 2005 without finishing the university course. The same year, he co-founded Loopt, a mobile application that allows you to transmit its geolocation. At its peak, the application has 5 million users.

He sold it in 2011 and then joined one of the most popular start-up incubators in Silicon Valley, “y combinator” . Among the start-ups that have been pushed and financed by Y combinator, we can cite Airbnb, Reddit, Twitch or Dropbox. Three years after joining the incubator, Sam takes the presidency until 2020.

A virtuous and humanist artificial intelligence project

In parallel, in 2015 he co-founded with Elon Musk (boss of Tesla, Spacex, Twitter) and other investors, Openai, a non-profit company to develop an artificial intelligence “Who will benefit all humanity”. In order to attract funding, the structure ultimately becomes a for -profit but capped company. In other words, for $ 1 invested, the investor cannot recover more than $ 100.

Read also:

OPENAI created in 2021 Dall in 2021.E, an artificial intelligence capable of generating an image on the basis of a user description. But what mainly propels Openai to the front of the stage is the launch in November 2022 of his conversational robot Chatgpt . A robot capable of generating text on demand using peak artificial intelligence, scenarios, words, stories, presentations, etc.

Bearer of an artificial intelligence project he wants at the service of the greatest number, Sam Altman, however, underlines at techcrunch 2017 the need to be prudent about artificial intelligences that are biases of algorithms learning machines, autonomous weapons or disinformation that they can generate.

Chatgpt has yet to improve

Beyond its impressive editorial skills, if Chatgpt interests in the small world of Silicon Valley, it is that it could be the future of search engines by responding directly and precisely to any request rather than ‘Show a list of results. Moreover, “”Chatgpt could become an intelligent assistant for all trades ”, estimates Eric Biernat, director of artificial intelligence within the OCTO cabinet (Accenture group) questioned by the newspaper of the net. One can imagine that he writes reports of meetings, that he writes the MCQs of a teacher or that he assists lyricists.

Read also:

According to its creator, this is only the start for Chatgpt. “”It will improve deeply, will be less annoying and more useful very quickly. »»

Objective: a turnover of $ 200 million

After a first investment of $ 1 billion in 2019, Microsoft would be interested in reinvesting in Openai up to an additional 10 billion according to the SEMAFOR information site. Now not profitable, the company is valued at $ 29 billion and hopes for a turnover of $ 200 million in 2023. An amount led to quintupler in 2024.

Very attractive financial prospects but that we will have to reach. “We will have to monetize [Chatgpt, Editor’s note] at some point, computer calculation costs us the eyes of the head»», had dropped Sam Altman in early December on Twitter. Note that with an estimated fortune between 200 and $ 250 million by the American media, Sam Altman has time to see coming.