Episode 5: OpenAI: Challenges and Opportunities

Episode 5: Patenting the Future - Harnessing AI's Full Potential with Gideon Miles

June 27, 2024

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Introduction

Episode 5 of the LexisNexis Evolving IP podcast features Gideon Myles, Associate General Counsel, Patents and Trademarks, OpenAI. 

Gideon joins us to explore the multifaceted world of AI, discussing its longstanding presence, current applications, and future potential. He addresses misconceptions, emphasizes AI’s benefits in automating tasks and enhancing productivity, and highlights the importance of regulation and ethical considerations in AI development and IP protection. 

Podcast Host

Expert 

  • Nigel Swycher, Senior Advisor, LexisNexis Intellectual Property

Conversation Highlights

Is AI New? 

“A large segment of the population thinks that AI is new and that it just popped up overnight with ChatGPT. But in fact, it’s been around for a long time, and we’ve all been using it.  

“I don’t think many people are necessarily aware of all the different places where it creeps in, like Netflix. We each see our own unique Netflix screen, and that’s all done by AI, trying to determine what we, as individuals, want to watch.  

“So, it’s actually been around for a really long time; we just weren’t necessarily aware of all of it.”

What Does AI Bring to the Table?  

“From my perspective, it’s about making things better. It’s about being able to automate many tasks that we as humans maybe don’t want to do, or aren’t actually efficient at doing, so that we can focus on the fun stuff, on things that require higher-level thinking. 

“I think we’re just starting to touch on what AI can do. What we haven’t quite achieved yet is the ability to get the systems to do things for us, to start automating tasks on our machines – like sending a bot out to do an activity for us, to do some research for us or go out and buy something while we’re doing something else. There’s a lot more that we hope will come.”

On Addressing the Fear of Hallucinations  

“There are going to be inaccuracies in content; the internet has tons of inaccuracies on it. What we as people need to do is be aware that these things happen. We should verify the information we get from the system, make sure it is accurate, and do more research.  

“We need to worry about what’s happening as we train them. But also, it’s just going to happen. I know I’ve given plenty of inaccurate answers in my life, especially when answering my children’s questions. It’s no different, you just need to check and verify that what you’re getting is correct.”

Navigating the Optimism and Pessimism around AI 

“I think that the benefits from this technology are going to far outweigh the negatives.  Figure out ways that you can leverage it as an individual, start experimenting with it.  

“And I think there are going to be people whose jobs may become obsolete, and we need to help those people. We need to make sure that we’re training them to do something else, that we’re guiding them along a path where they can continue to be happy with what they’re doing.  

“But I do think that the things we’re going to be able to do with this technology are going to be amazing.”

For the IP Professional, What Can AI Do for Them in Their Roles? 

“Using AI for patent analysis is a great way. Another favourite use case of mine right now is summarizing documents. It works really well for understanding what the document is about, getting that first-level understanding.  

“Additionally, AI can be used for editing content—give it something you’ve written and ask it to make it shorter make the language more accessible, or change the language to some other style of writing.  

“There are also tools emerging in the patent and contract writing spaces that help draft these documents from scratch. From the patent writing tools I have seen so far, I think there’s still a large need for humans to participate in that process. But they can help you get a framework together.”  

On OpenAI’s Strategy for Protecting Their IP

“The technology is incredibly important to us. And so we kind of think about it from multiple perspectives, considering all of the different IP protections that are available.  

“And we’re not an aggressive company when it comes to patents. That’s not our plan. And we kind of view it as we need to protect ourselves.  

“By filing patents, if we don’t use them, then we’re kind of protecting the AI ecosystem as well. You know, that’s one less patent that somebody else could get and leverage against others. So, we kind of think about it that way.”

What Does the Future Hold? 

“I am particularly excited about the use cases within the healthcare industry, ways that it can be used there to do drug discovery, and identification of diseases.”

Gideon’s Key Takeaway 

“AI is going to be hugely beneficial. 

“There will be ways that this technology can be used in a negative way. But that the benefit will outweigh the harm, and that we as an industry are definitely thinking about the harmful ways it can be used, and are trying to address those.” 

Nigel’s Key Takeaway 

“This AI frenzy also leads to an expectation that the models will provide instant solutions to all problems great and small. It’s reassuring to hear Gideon encourage caution.  

“It’s uncomfortable for lawyers to be thrown into a debate where many of the foundational questions have no clear answers, not least whether the copyright questions around how LLMs are trained, could stop or impede further innovation. 

 “That in my view would be tragic. Not because we will have to write our own CVS, but because the applications which Gideon talks around healthcare and education, security and so much more, are likely to be game-changing in Europe and elsewhere.”  

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