Microsoft just announced a one billion dollar investment into Open AI, a project charged to develop AI which”benefits all humanity.” Yet Microsoft’s work with AI, in reality, has been much less benevolent. In April, the Financial Times reported the technology giant collaborated with China’s National University of Defense Technology on at least three AI research projects. The upsetting involved using AI for mapping and recognition. Senator Marco Rubio reacted to this alliance imagining,”It’s profoundly disturbing that an American company would be actively working with the Chinese military to further build up the government’s defense system against its own people — an action which makes them complicit in helping the Communist government’s totalitarian censorship devices and egregious human rights abuses.”
Microsoft justifies its cooperation on AI research by noting That”researchers, that are often professors, conduct basic research with leading scholars and experts from around the globe to advance our comprehension of technology.”
Yet while the researchers in China’s National University of Defense Technology might be high rate, they work under the lead that the management of China’s Central Military Commission. It’s inconceivable that the Military would be encouraging research if it didn’t think it had significant applications for the government.
And, this project is far from the alliance between Microsoft and China. Last year, the business hosted its very first Microsoft AI Innovate conference in Beijing with 1,000 developers, in which it boasted of this”Chinese Government Edition” for a lot of its primary products. Alain Crozier, the CEO of Microsoft Greater China Region told the crowd,”We are the first worldwide cloud partner to provide a fantastic, compliant and lawful cloud with Azure and Office365 in China.”
Microsoft’s collaboration with China Goes far beyond AI. While Google has rightly come under scrutiny for covertly developing its currently scrapped”Project Dragonfly,” a censored search engine that would block criticism of the Chinese government, Microsoft’s Bing has long run censored search results. In 2014, it was revealed that Chinese language searches of topics like’Dalai Lama’ and’Tiananmen Square’ displayed Chinese state propaganda at the top of the search results when these searches were made from the U.S.
Microsoft’s Press release about its own billion dollar venture with Open AI becomes painful. Microsoft stated,”Microsoft and OpenAI will jointly construct new Azure AI supercomputing technology. OpenAI will port its services to run on Microsoft Azure, which it will use to create new AI technology and deliver on the promise of artificial general intelligence.”
Both Microsoft’s and policymakers New partners at OpenAI should be asking several questions:
Will this new Azure AI supercomputing benefit the”Chinese Government Edition” of Azure?
Can Microsoft promise this new technology won’t be utilised in improving its censorship tools in Bing or using its endeavors with the Chinese army?
How can the Info from Microsoft’s wide variety of products from these as GitHub, Office, Windows, LinkedIn, Skype, and Azure be used with OpenAI?
The same has not been faced by microsoft Questions about its relationship in large part because Microsoft’s seen as the news of yesterday, compared to more modern technology giants Like Google, Amazon, and Facebook. But Microsoft’s evaluation at over one Trillion dollars is larger than those comparative newcomers, or any company in the World by that matter.