Artificial intelligence (AI) experts are being offered millions in salaries and stock options as the demand for this kind of talent soars.
OpenAI, a non-profit AI research lab run by US tycoon Elon Musk, paid its AI researchers up to US$1.9 million in 2016, reports The New York Times citing a tax filing.
Analysts have expressed fear, saying the exorbitant salary might tempt AI teachers ad lecturers into joining companies as engineers, potentially reducing the amount of new AI graduates.
The shortage in AI specialists is widely felt, with just about every major company trying to incorporate the technology into its applications and business processes.
There are just 300,000 “AI researchers and practitioners” in the world, according to a December 2017 report from Chinese tech giant Tencent, compiled by the Tencent Research Institute.
According to Deloitte’s 2018 Human Capital Trends, one in four companies are already using AI, with analysts expecting AI to become commonplace over the next three to five years.
Silicon Valley giants like Google, Apple, and Facebook are undoubtedly prepared to invest in AI professionals as they race to develop AI products. According to The New York Times, there is a joke in Silicon Valley that the tech industry needs a National Football League-style salary cap on AI specialists.