AI + a16z

Making the Most of Open Source in AI

Episode Summary

a16z General Partner Anjney Midha leads an insightful panel discussion about what the AI community can learn from past open source efforts. Panelists include Jim Zemlin (Linux Foundation), Mitchell Baker (Mozilla), and Percy Liang (Stanford / Together AI).

Episode Notes

There are few terms in the world of AI — if any — that invoke more of a reaction than a simple four-letter word: Open. Whether it’s industry debates over business models and the actual definition of open, or the US government actively discussing how to regulate open models, seemingly everyone has an opinion on what it means for AI models to be open. The good, the bad, and the ugly.

But to be fair, there’s good reason for this. In a world where many developers have come to expect open source tools at every level of the stack, the idea of powerful models locked behind enterprise licenses and corporate ethics can be disconcerting — especially for a technology as game-changing as AI promises to be. It’s a matter of who has the ability to innovate in the space, and whose release schedules and guardrails they’re beholden to.

This is why, back in February, a16z convened a panel of experts to discuss the state — and future — of open source AI models.