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This past weekend was momentous for the artificial intelligence (AI) industry, and over the past few days, many assets associated with the technology were seeing price pops. Among these was cryptocurrency token Chainlink (CRYPTO: LINK), which rose by over 7% this weekend from its level at midafternoon Friday.

Involvement in the hot technology of the moment

Chainlink has positioned itself as a crypto play on the expansion of AI. It’s effectively an oracle token that allows users to pull off-chain data they need for smart contracts to work. That’s a good niche, as evidenced by the nearly 2,000 projects that use Chainlink for this purpose.

Hunting for and identifying necessary data seems like it would be a good task for AI. This past May, Chainlink’s developers published an extensive study demonstrating that their platform could be enhanced greatly with the use of the technology. This effectively positioned Chainlink as something of an “AI token.”

That was a key reason for its Monday price surge. AI was very much in the news following the departure of OpenAI CEO Sam Altman from his position at that company on Friday. Ever-opportunistic Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) quickly hired Altman to head a dedicated AI unit at the tech powerhouse.

OpenAI’s loss is other companies’ gain

With Altman on its employee rolls, it’s easy to imagine Microsoft soon becoming a mighty presence in AI and a very active developer of the technology (not to mention a consumer of products and services that enhance its AI offerings). That, in turn, is sure to have positive knock-on effects for AI-enhanced solutions like those offered by Chainlink.

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Eric Volkman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Chainlink and Microsoft. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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