While Microsoft is pouring billions into OpenAI, Meta’s AI chief says ChatGPT is “not particularly innovative.”

Why it matters: Many believe 2023 will be the year artificial intelligence goes mainstream, with huge investment in any company or product that goes by the name of “AI” or “machine learning.” Microsoft’s renewed partnership with OpenAI does not confirm this prediction. However, it does show that the Redmond giant is moving on from its failed mixed reality efforts to dreaming big about the future of AI-powered apps and services.

Microsoft has announced a “multi-billion dollar” investment in OpenAI, the artificial intelligence company behind the wildly popular ChatGPT service and other projects such as DALL-E and GPT-3. The announcement follows massive layoffs that previously affected nearly every team working on Microsoft’s metaverse and mixed reality efforts.

The two companies have been quietly collaborating for years, and the latest decision shows Redmond’s deep interest in OpenAI technology to improve its software and cloud services ecosystems. The partnership began in 2016, but took off in 2019 when Microsoft matched a $1 billion investment from the OpenAI founders and other investors.

Over the next few years, OpenAI raised nearly $2 billion and built its infrastructure around Microsoft Azure. Training and testing AI models requires massive amounts of processing power, which is why Microsoft even built a dedicated supercomputer to spearhead its OpenAI efforts.

Both companies did not have details on the goals of the renewed partnership. However, Microsoft says we can soon expect “new categories of digital experiences” for consumers and businesses. Bloomberg notes that investment is estimated at $10 billion over the next few years.

The rumor mill recently revealed something about Microsoft powering the Bing search engine and the entire Microsoft 365 suite of apps with the power of GPT-4 — OpenAI’s yet-to-be-released AI model that will be released later this year. . Given the strong response from companies like Google, a chatbot as a spiritual successor to Clippy, the infamous ’90s assistant, doesn’t seem all that appealing.

A lot of hype surrounds OpenAI technology in general and ChatGPT in particular. People who have used the tool find that it is capable of providing convincing answers to various text queries. You can ask him to compose poems, answer science questions, or even write code for an app or service. In other words, it can mimic the way real people write and speak to capture the imagination of people all over the world.

The answers provided by ChatGPT aren’t perfect, but some people worry that the tool is quickly evolving to replace some jobs and create problems, such as students using it to cheat on final exams.

Others, like Meta’s chief AI scientist Yann LeCun, aren’t as impressed with the tool’s current capabilities. “In terms of the underlying techniques, ChatGPT is not particularly innovative,” LeCun said at a recent virtual press event.

Although the scientist thinks that it is “stacked well” from a technical point of view, he notes that several organizations have developed different technologies that have made it work for many years.

In other words, it’s not the technology itself that’s impressive, but the sheer scale of the data used to train GPT-3.5, the model that serves as the foundation for ChatGPT in its current form. When asked why companies like Meta and Google haven’t introduced similar tools yet, LeCun explained that both companies “have a lot to lose by running systems that fix things.”

Many machine learning experts agree with LeCun. The consensus is that generative AI tools like ChatGPT have great potential to enhance creative work, but there are many obstacles to achieving this goal. Examples include:

  • Legal issues with using copyrighted works to train AI models.
  • Potential for use in cybercrime.
  • There is a relatively high probability that an AI model will produce wrong and biased answers or otherwise unusable results.

Interestingly, even OpenAI CEO Sam Altman feels the enthusiasm for his company’s technology needs to be turned down a notch. Enthusiasts are already crazy to speculate Of the long-awaited successor to GPT-3, however, Altman says they are “begging to be disappointed, and they will be.”

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