Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Open Source Initiative is close to coming up with a definition for Open Source AI

Software DevelopmentOpen Source Initiative is close to coming up with a definition for Open Source AI

The Open Source Initiative (OSI) is on a mission to define “Open Source AI.” It wants to be able to provide a framework that can be used to determine if an AI system is open source or not, as there is not currently a framework for doing so, the OSI explained. 

According to OSI, having a standard definition is important because there are currently several companies claiming that their AI models are open source when they might not truly be. 

“Just as the Open Source Definition serves as the globally accepted standard for Open Source software, so will the Open Source AI Definition act as a standard for openness in AI systems and their components,” the organization wrote in its announcement.

The group has been working on the Open Source AI definition since 2022, and for the past several months it has been holding weekly town halls and has created several draft versions. OSI says it is almost at a stable version, and over the next several months it will travel across North America, Europe, Africa, Asia Pacific, and Latin America to solicit further input on the draft.

The OSI’s goal is to be able to present the stable version at All Things Open in October in Raleigh, North Carolina. 

According to OSI, it has made an effort to make the process of coming up with the Open Source AI definition as inclusive and diverse as possible. In its announcement it highlighted that 53% of the working groups were composed of people of color, 28% were women, and 63% of the women were women of color. 

“AI is different from regular software and forces all stakeholders to review how the Open Source principles apply to this space,” said Stefano Maffulli, executive director of the OSI. “OSI believes that everybody deserves to maintain agency and control of the technology. We also recognize that markets flourish when clear definitions promote transparency, collaboration and permissionless innovation. After spending almost two years gathering voices from all over the world to identify the principles of Open Source suitable for AI systems, we’re embarking on a worldwide roadshow to refine and validate the release candidate version of the Open Source AI Definition.”

A full schedule of which cities OSI will travel to and when can be found on the Open Source AI website


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