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  • Philip Osadebay - Tech Journalist

Google launches Bard as its ChatGPT competitor

Google Bard is a conversational AI model designed to respond to text inputs and carry out various tasks such as answering questions, providing recommendations, and engaging in small talk.

Google has opened access to Bard, its AI-powered chatbot, which is competing with similar services from Microsoft and OpenAI. The search giant is initially rolling out the service to users in the US and UK who can sign up for a waitlist on the Bard website.

In a blog post, Sissie Hsiao and Eli Collins from Google said that the company has learned a lot from testing Bard, and is looking to improve it further by gathering feedback from more people.

Last month, Google announced Bard after reportedly going into "code red" mode following the release of OpenAI's ChatGPT late last year. ChatGPT captured the attention of the public with its ability to generate human-like answers to various questions, including creating oddly specific poems and producing compelling cover letters for social media managers.

By January, ChatGPT had amassed 100 million active users, making it the fastest-growing web platform in history. This led to an influx of companies, including Microsoft, introducing their own AI products, such as the new Bing search engine and a "copilot" tool for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, as well as AI features for Google's Workspace tools, including Gmail and Docs.

However, after Google unveiled Bard, the chatbot came under fire when it provided inaccurate information about the James Webb Space Telescope during a demonstration intended to show off its capabilities. Google clarified that Bard is still an experimental product and emphasized that the AI tool won't always get everything right.

Bard markets itself as a "creative and helpful collaborator," providing suggestions for users on how to get started on tasks such as creating a packing list for a camping trip or beginning to write a novel. However, in smaller print on the Bard website, Google acknowledges that the AI chatbot may display "inaccurate or offensive information" that doesn't align with the company's values.

As Google, Microsoft, and other companies, from DuckDuckGo to Adobe to Grammarly, introduce new tools and services infused with artificial intelligence, concerns about trustworthiness are increasingly being raised. The widespread interest in AI technology has also prompted significant speculation about the future of AI and the potential for misunderstandings.

Google has plans to expand access to Bard to additional countries and languages over time, but the company has not yet responded to requests for further comment on the matter. It is evident that the competition for the development of advanced AI technology is heating up, and companies are working hard to improve and perfect their offerings.

However, it is also essential that they take responsibility for their products and work towards developing technology that is not only cutting-edge but also trustworthy and safe for users.

Google's release of Bard, an AI-powered chatbot that competes with services from Microsoft and OpenAI, marks a significant milestone in the development of AI technology. While the technology has incredible potential to transform our lives, it also raises important questions about trustworthiness, responsibility, and the future of AI.

As such, it is crucial for companies developing AI products to prioritise transparency, ethical considerations, and user safety in their efforts to innovate and create cutting-edge technology.


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