Sam Altman, former co-founder and CEO of OpenAI, is set to lead Microsoft’s newly established advanced AI research team after parting ways with the ChatGPT maker.

Since the dismissal of 38-year-old Sam Altman from his role as CEO of OpenAI, comparisons have arisen between his exit and Steve Jobs’ departure from Apple in 1985. While Jobs later made a triumphant return, Altman, terminated by OpenAI’s board for alleged lack of transparency, is facing closed doors. His abrupt departure has sent shockwaves through Silicon Valley, with some viewing it as a boardroom coup. Now, with Altman’s move to Microsoft to head its advanced AI research team, here are some lesser-known facts about him.

Early Life and Affection for Mac:
Born in Chicago in 1985, Altman spent his formative years in St. Louis, Missouri, attending John Burroughs School. A top student, Altman’s pivotal moment occurred at age 8 when his parents introduced him to a Macintosh LC II, sparking his passion for programming. This marked a turning point in his life, leading to a before-and-after division.

Coming Out as Gay:
Altman publicly addressed his sexuality during high school, challenging his school’s environment by announcing his homosexuality at a National Coming Out Day assembly. Facing the complexities of being gay in the Midwest during the 2000s, Altman took a courageous stance, advocating for diversity of thought.

Living in San Francisco with his partner, Oliver Mulherin, Altman previously dated Nick Sivo, co-founding Loopt, a mobile social network. Altman and Mulherin aspire to start a family together.

Stanford and Entrepreneurial Journey:
Enrolling at Stanford University for computer science, Altman dropped out with two classmates to work on Loopt. Despite reaching a valuation of $175 million, Loopt was sold for $43 million in 2012. Altman later co-founded venture fund Hydrazine Capital and joined Y Combinator in 2011. In 2014, he became Y Combinator’s president, contributing to its success.

Wealth and Investments:
Altman’s personal investments in companies like Airbnb and Instacart contributed to his wealth. Featured on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list for venture capital at 29, Altman enjoys racing cars and owns multiple sports cars.

Role in OpenAI:
Co-founding OpenAI in 2015, Altman assumed the CEO position in May 2019, overseeing its transition from a charity to a capped-profit corporation. Under his leadership, OpenAI garnered a $1 billion investment from Microsoft in 2019, leading to significant integration of OpenAI’s technology into Microsoft’s platforms.

Unexpected Departure from OpenAI:
Altman’s sudden termination as OpenAI CEO on November 17 raised eyebrows. Despite speculation about his potential return, the board appointed Emmett Shear as the new CEO. Hours later, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella revealed that Altman and co-founder Greg Brockman would join Microsoft’s new advanced AI research team.

In conclusion, Altman’s journey is marked by entrepreneurial ventures, advocacy, and a significant role in shaping OpenAI’s trajectory in the AI industry.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *