Microsoft Hires OpenAI Founders After Board Rejects CEO Return

On Sunday night, the board of directors of OpenAI, the popular AI company, said Sam Altman would not get his job back as CEO. They named Emmett Shear as the new interim CEO to replace Mira Murati, who only got the job two days before.

Later that day, Microsoft announced they were hiring Sam Altman and Greg Brockman from OpenAI. Greg was the president and co-founder who quit because Sam got fired. Microsoft will start a new research lab for the two men to lead.

The announcements happened after a wild weekend for OpenAI. Sam Altman wanted his CEO job back, which shocked everyone. The board said he had “lost trust” but didn’t give details. Most employees and investors thought highly of Sam.

After Sam was fired, he and Greg started planning a new AI startup. Microsoft led other investors in pushing for Sam’s return. Over half of OpenAI’s 700 workers signed a paper saying they may join Sam’s new project if the board didn’t change its mind.

The board stood by its choice of no longer having Sam as CEO. It said this was needed to properly oversee the company. Now at Microsoft, Sam will run the new lab with freedom to innovate quickly. Microsoft’s CEO said the lab will operate separately but help resources be provided.

Many are surprised at how things unfolded. The board and Sam did not see eye to eye on safety issues for AI. But most saw Sam as a driving force behind OpenAI’s success in making AI more known. It remains to be seen if workers will follow Sam to his new role at Microsoft.

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