🎤 Microsoft's new AI model sees Mona Lisa rap

🥊 Musk vs OpenAI: The latest in the lawsuit

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Welcome to AI Tool Report!

Monday’s top story: Microsoft has unveiled its new AI model—VASA-1—which can create realistic videos of people’s faces, talking, from a single picture and audio clip.

🌤️ This Morning on AI Tool Report

  1. 🎤 Microsoft's new AI model sees Mona Lisa rap

  2. 🌏 OpenAI expanding into India

  3. 💰AI start-up Mistral valued at $5B if it wins funding

  4. 🥊 Musk vs OpenAI: The latest in the lawsuit

Read Time: 5 minutes

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Mona Lisa

Our Report: Microsoft Research Asia has unveiled a new AI model—VASA-1—that can generate realistic human faces that can speak, from a single picture and a speech audio clip, demonstrating the model’s capability by releasing footage of the Mona Lisa rapping Lady Ga Ga’s, “Paparazzi.”

🔑 Key Points:

  • VASA-1 takes an image of a person, pairs it with an audio file, and creates a video of their face, mimicking facial expressions and head motions, and synchronizing lip movements.

  • It was built using AI programs like OpenAI’s DALL-E-3, head movement generation models, and numerous video samples to create realistic facial expressions and movements.

  • Microsoft sees VASA-1 paving the way ”for real-time engagements with human-like avatars” to provide companionship and therapeutic support for those who need it.

🤨 Why you should care: Microsoft is “opposed to any behavior to create misleading or harmful contents of real persons” and, therefore, has no plans to release an online demo, API, or product, preferring to make sure the model "will be used responsibly and in accordance with proper regulations” before it launches.

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GLOBAL EXPANSION

🌏 OpenAI expanding into India

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  • OpenAI has hired its first employee in India—Pragya Misra—previously the Director of Public Affairs at Truecaller (which has collaborated with the Indian government and police).

  • Misra will lead public policy affairs and partnerships and has been hired for her legal experience and reputation, which will help OpenAI advocate and comply with Indian AI regulations.

  • This move (and its new office in Japan) demonstrates OpenAI’s agressive expansion plans for Asia, despite competition from Google’s AI model, which can handle 100+ Indian languages.

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FUNDING

💰AI start-up Mistral valued at $5B if it wins funding

  • French startup—Mistral AI—is reportedly planning to raise $534M in extra funding, which will value the company at $5B (valued at $2B in December) if they’re successful.

  • It’s unknown which investors are included in the new funding round, but one of Mistral's biggest, existing investors is Microsoft which invested $16M in February.

  • If Microsoft is involved, it could prompt further investigation from EU regulators about market dominance, after it was just cleared over its partnership with OpenAI.

LEGAL

🥊 Musk vs OpenAI: The latest in the lawsuit 

  • In March, Musk filed a lawsuit against OpenAI over the violation of its foundational ‘open’ principles, by partnering with Microsoft for its own commercial gain.

  • OpenAI’s lawyers have now retaliated, stating his allegations are nothing more than “revisionist history”, and that Musk is just trying to leverage OpenAI’s success “for his commercial benefit.”

  • The next court hearing will be on Thursday, April 24, when Musk and OpenAI will find out if the court has decided to dismiss or continue with Musk’s lawsuit.

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Until next time, Martin & Liam.

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