I read "Google engineer warns it could lose out to open-source technology in AI race" in the Guardian this morning. The following paragraphs stood out:
“The uncomfortable truth is, we aren’t positioned to win this arms race and neither is OpenAI. While we’ve been squabbling, a third faction has been quietly eating our lunch,” the engineer wrote.
The engineer went on to state that the “third faction” posing a competitive threat to Google and OpenAI was the open-source community.
The pace at which new research is being published and implementations of cutting-edge techniques are being open-sourced is breathtaking. I do wonder how OpenAI, Google, and other companies building large LLMs will differentiate themselves over time. Proprietary product integration, such as is the case with Microsoft's Copilot series of products? I think that's one way. I am hesitant to consider any one particular feature -- more robust source citation, greater context length, etc. -- as being enough to build a moat, as I suspect these innovations will happen just as much in the open source community as the private sector.
One thing is for sure: the industry is moving fast, and a lot of exciting research and development is happening in the open.