OpenAI, the AI startup behind the viral AI-powered chatbot ChatGPT, plans to partner with third-party vendors to make it easier for developers — specifically enterprises — to fine-tune its AI models using custom data.
Today, OpenAI announced that it’ll team up with Scale AI, the San Francisco-based data labeling startup, to bring together Scale AI’s fine-tuning tools and OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 text-generating model. (GPT-3.5 is the predecessor to GPT-4, OpenAI’s flagship model, which understands images as well as text.)
Fine-tuning lets developers tailor an AI model to specific tasks. For example, a business could fine-tune a model to match its brand voice and tone, or have it respond to questions in a particular language.
Scale customers will be able to prep and “enhance” their data using Scale’s Data Engine platform, then fine-tune GPT-3.5 with their data and further customize the model with features like the ability to reference or cite their proprietary data in its responses.
Scale says that fine-tuned GPT-3.5 models will be reviewed by human experts to “ensure that the model exceeds performance expectations and safety requirements.”
“The partnership incorporates OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 fine-tuning APIs with Scale’s fine-tuning and data expertise from over seven years of building and deploying pioneering AI solutions for customers,” Scale CEO Alexandr Wang told TechCrunch in an email interview. “Scale is OpenAI’s preferred fine-tuning partner to deploy the most performative models, and we look forward to expanding our relationship. OpenAI has chosen to partner with Scale because of our expertise and proven track record of delivering high-quality models with real business impact for our customers.”
News of the collaboration comes a day after OpenAI said that it would begin letting customers fine-tune GPT-3.5 Turbo, the lightweight version of GPT-3.5, using its fine-tuning API. In the announcement, OpenAI hinted that it was developing an in-house tuning tool; it’s unclear whether that tool’s meant to complement platforms like Scale AI or serve a different purpose altogether.
In any case, OpenAI COO Brad Lightcap pitched the team-up with Scale AI as a way to allow companies customizing GPT-3.5 to benefit from additional services and expertise beyond what OpenAI provides.
“We want to serve customers wherever they are. We’re excited to work with great partners like Scale that help us serve the needs of our customers as they put AI to work in their organizations,” he said via email. “This new partnership allows us to extend the benefits of our capabilities to more companies given Scale’s leadership and experience helping organizations effectively leverage enterprise data for AI. Our customers can now fine-tune OpenAI models just as they would through OpenAI, while also benefiting from Scale’s enterprise AI expertise and Data Engine.”
When asked whether to expect new fine-tuning partners for OpenAI models down the line — such as GPT-4, which OpenAI says will gain fine-tuning capabilities in the fall — Lightcap declined to say.