Just here to commend the Burke mastheads.
I, for one, welcome our new AI Overlord … (wait, which one is it this week?)
and a new techie personality cult, growing quickly around Sam Altman’s popularity among Silicon Valley insiders
This was the thing that stuck me the most about this whole affair, how much of a cult of personality Altman has built around himself. He seems to be more of a showman than of an actual doer, which tracks with what SV loves (spent years there during the dot-com bubble when I was in grad school). Nadella has apparently fallen completely under this guy’s spell.
Edit: spelling is hard before the first cup of cold-brew
I feel like everyone involved in this story is probably awful.
There are no easy stories here
There is one, just not one that anyone in SV is interested in hearing. Quoting myself from the earlier topic:
We can also add the Cruise guy to the list.
Tech CEO’s can not fail- they can only be failed.
“I blame society – specifically that it exists despite what Thatcher said.”
Muggles aren’t meant to understand the marketing wizardry world.
Grifting Hat: ”Vogt, your gimmick is a (mostly) self-driving car.”
Vogt: ”Didn’t Elno get that too?”
GH: ”We don’t talk about Elno-no-no…”
My current CEO wishes he could be all of these guys. He tries, we try and keep him in check.
Edit: he did bring in hundreds of millions of dollars in VC money, so his schtick works. It just really sucks to be beholden to someone like this once the VC money is in.
What most hilarious to me is that all this, at least publicly has to do with “AI safety” - basically SV’s hottest new religion (replacing randism?). I doubt that a single one of these people actually care about that - some poor lower level engineer may have bought in, but not the board or sama…
As a founder myself, having taken VC money (this is a field where you either do that or don’t have a company - semiconductors) and going through all the storytelling and spin that goes with it, these guys are both an extreme example and a serious warning we are actively trying to avoid…
There was a time in my career when one of my main tasks was to herd and render harmless tech founders like these on behalf of the investors and the board. The levels of arrogance, self-regard, and entitlement are astounding.
Such a much needed task, though I suspect it was greeted without fanfare or adequate kudos for jobs well done.
On of those jobs where when done right, no one knows you did anything?
Oh, thank god, I was so worried for him over the weekend. /s
Pretty much. The investors and boards knew what I was doing and paid me accordingly, but otherwise it was mostly big-stick/nice-doggy diplomacy with founders and tech gurus (all too often Libertarian ones).
Once I got my grad degree in the Valley, I spent a couple years there working at a startup cofounded by one of the members of my thesis committee…the external CEO they brought on board was there because the new CEO’s wife was in the low double digits of Yahoo original employees so he had connections and a good deal of cash laying about. This guy thought his shit didn’t stink, and I’ve never met a more incompetent person in my entire career…and I’ve worked for some doozies.
(Ctrl-Z? End of text file in MS-DOS 2.0?)
The overtures toward Altman suggest that the board may have been surprised by the sizable reaction from the world at large
The world at large?
You know… the bit that matters.