Sunday Signal: OpenAI crosses $1.3B, 31 lessons about money and Gradatim Ferociter
Hey friends 👋 Happy Sunday.
Here’s your weekly dose of AI and introspection.
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The State of AI Report analyses the most interesting advancements in AI across the last year. Now in its sixth edition, AI investors Nathan Benaich and the Air Street Capital team cover not only what happened, but the implications for the future.
Alex’s take: The State of AI report is an annual read for me. I’m a big advocate of finding, reading and sharing trusted resources that report on the facts in AI, for it is all too easy to hypothesise on what ‘could’ happen next.
Last week, it was reported that Meta was paying celebrities up to $5M to create AI characters based on their likeness. However, it faced backlash from fans as the AI avatars look and sound like their identity models, but have different names. Kendall Jenner is “Billie” and MrBeast is “Zach”.
Alex’s take: We’re edging closer and closer to living in Black Mirror. I can’t help but feel this echoes the episode “Be Right Back,” where Martha uses a service to create a virtual avatar of her deceased boyfriend, Ash, using his digital communications and social media. This leads her to eventually buy a physically identical robot to him. I have two thoughts:
Eventually, celebrities might not need to personally feature in ads; their digital replicas could do it for them.
How long until we’re buying robot versions of Kendall Jenner or MrBeast?
OpenAI is eating the world. Since launching ChatGPT Plus in February, their growth has been breakneck. The company is now generating over $100M per month—a 30% increase from the summer. In comparison, OpenAI’s total revenue in 2022 was just $28M.
Alex’s take: Anthropic, one of OpenAI’s closest competitors, has reached only $100M in annualised revenue—about $8M monthly. This is less than 1% of OpenAI’s $1.3B run rate. While similar products are emerging, ChatGPT has put OpenAI in a commanding position; it doesn’t seem like it’s slowing down anytime soon.
1 Article I Enjoyed
Ryan Holiday is one of my favourite writers.
Not only does he write thoughtful pieces on Stoicism—this reflective article on money brings with it financial wisdom.
Some takeaways I enjoyed:
School provides very little education on money
We leave it to kids who become adults to figure finances out for themselves
Embracing the concept of ‘enough’. Seneca once said, "If you don't regard what you have as enough, you will never be happy even if you rule the entire world". When you find this place—everything else is a bonus.
1 Idea I Learned
Gradatim Ferociter is a Latin phrase that means “step by step, ferociously”.
It also happens to be the motto of Jeff Bezos’ aerospace company, Blue Origin.
If you’re building a flying vehicle, you can’t cut any corners. You have to do it step by step.
But each step has to be done with passion and ferocity.
It’s important you put one foot in front of the other and compound daily, incremental gains.
Then, small things will become big things.
1 Quote to Share
“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” — Lao Tzu
This quote perfectly captures the effortless flow of nature.
You should not force things to happen. Be patient, focus on what you can control, and trust that everything will unfold in its own time.
1 Question to Ponder
Ask yourself at every moment, “Is this necessary?” — Marcus Aurelius
Because most of what we say and do is not essential. If you can eliminate it, you’ll have more time and more tranquillity.
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See you next week,
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