Home Google Deepmind CEO says AI industry is full of ‘hype’ and ‘grifting’

Google Deepmind CEO says AI industry is full of ‘hype’ and ‘grifting’

The CEO of Google’s AI division Deepmind, Sir Demis Hassabis, has called out the amount of hype circulating the industry, sometimes obscuring the genuine developments.

Having co-founded Deepmind in 2010, Sir Demis has years of experience in the field of AI, well before machine learning tools hit the mainstream. More and more everyday people can use AI tools in their lives but the very nature of something taking off to the extent that it has does lead to some confusion in what the future could hold.

In an interview with the Financial Times, Sir Demis compares the AI explosion to the crypto boom of the last few years, highlighting that the billion-dollar investments into generative AI start-ups and products “brings with it a whole attendant bunch of hype and maybe some grifting”.

“Some of that has now spilled over into AI, which I think is a bit unfortunate. It clouds the science and the research, which is phenomenal,” the CEO continued. “In a way, AI’s not hyped enough but in some senses, it’s too hyped. We’re talking about all sorts of things that are just not real.”

The AI investment boom

This boom can largely be traced back to the launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT tool in November 2022, bringing AI-powered chats to the mainstream for the first time. Other start-ups raced to release similar or competitive tools, backed by a massive round of a collectible $42.5bn in 2,500 AI start-up equity rounds from VC groups in 2023.

Major tech companies like Microsoft, Alphabet, and Nvidia have also risen to the challenge, each bringing their own AI innovation – as well as Google’s own push via Deepmind.

Whether under or over-hyped, it certainly seems to be true that the average person’s understanding of AI is somewhat limited. The future possibilities of AI leave a lot left to be discovered, something that Sir Demis himself is looking forward to.

“I think we’re only scratching the surface of what I believe is going to be possible over the next decade-plus,” Sir Demis stated. “We’re at the beginning, maybe, of a new golden era of scientific discovery, a new Renaissance.”

Featured image: Ideogram

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Rachael Davies
Tech Journalist

Rachael Davies has spent six years reporting on tech and entertainment, writing for publications like the Evening Standard, Huffington Post, Dazed, and more. From niche topics like the latest gaming mods to consumer-faced guides on the latest tech, she puts her MA in Convergent Journalism to work, following avenues guided by a variety of interests. As well as writing, she also has experience in editing as the UK Editor of The Mary Sue , as well as speaking on the important of SEO in journalism at the Student Press Association National Conference. You can find her full portfolio over on…

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