IN a dramatic plot twist to an already complex set of events, OpenAI – the firm behind the ChatGPT phenomenon – has restored Sam Altman as its CEO.
The move came in the wake of threats of a massive walkout by staff who were all offered jobs with Microsoft after the technology giant said it would bring Altman into the multinational corporation.
Four days ago, Altman was booted out of OpenAI’s San Fransico HQ with the board of directors citing a “lack of candid communication” from the 38-year-old.
READ MORE: Sam Altman dumped by ChatGPT creator OpenAI
It sparked a wave of unease for the Californian company, as critics and staff piled on to what they claimed was OpenAI losing its greatest asset – the man who kicked off what has now become an artificial intelligence boom.
OpenAI has also agreed to reshuffle its board of directors, and this morning named former US Treasury Secretary Larry Summers as a member and ex-Salesforce CEO Bret Taylor as chair.
Earlier today, Altman said he was looking forward to getting back to business as he praised the efforts of Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.
“I love OpenAI, and everything I’ve done over the past few days has been in service of keeping this team and its mission together,” he said.
“When I decided to join Microsoft on Sunday evening, it was clear that was the best path for me and the team. With the new board and with Satya’s support, I’m looking forward to returning to OpenAI, and building on our strong partnership with Microsoft.”
Nadella, whose corporation is deeply entwined with OpenAI as it looks to roll out the technology to its users, also commented.
“We believe this is a first essential step on a path to more stable, well-informed, and effective governance,” he said.
OpenAI now has what it refers to as a new ‘initial board’, in which Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo will stay on. It remains to be seen if any of its no-equity directors will stay, or if capped profit investors – Microsoft, for instance, with its 49 per cent ownership – will be appointed.