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The Morning After: Google's ChatGPT rival is called Bard

The AI will act as an "experimental conversational AI service" for its users.
Google neon is seen during the reopening of Google office in a historical building at the Main Square in Krakow, Poland on November 29, 2022. After nearly seven years of absence, Google reopened in Krakow hiring engineers which together with hub in Warsaw will create the largest center in Europe dealing with Google Cloud computing services. (Photo by Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
NurPhoto via Getty Images
Mat Smith
Mat Smith|@thatmatsmith|February 7, 2023 7:15 AM

In the face of so much ChatGPT news and buzz, Google announced on Monday its own chatbot AI project, Bard, will be unveiled with more details at Wednesday's Google Presents event in Paris. Bard will serve as an "experimental conversational AI service," according to a blog post by Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Monday. It uses Google's existing Language Model for Dialogue Applications (LaMDA) platform, which the company has been developing for the past two years.

However, it won’t be open to everyone, like ChatGPT currently is, which ruins the hype a little. Google is starting with a lightweight version of LaMDA, open to a select group of trusted users before scaling up. "We’ll combine external feedback with our own internal testing to make sure Bard’s responses meet a high bar for quality, safety and groundedness in real-world information," Pichai said.

As we’ll get into below, it’s a busy time for OpenAI’s chatbot tech. Microsoft has a surprise event later today, and that AI-generated Seinfeld stream (based on OpenAI’s GPT-3 Davinci model) was banned from Twitch.

– Mat Smith

The biggest stories you might have missed

Sony’s expansive PlayStation VR2 FAQ answers (almost) all your burning questions

The $550 peripheral will arrive on February 22nd.

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Sony

Sony has published a lengthy FAQ for all things PS VR2. It’s promised more than 30 games to choose from during the launch window, defined as the first month from the release date. Among those are Horizon Call of the Mountain (a VR spin-off of the Horizon games) and VR modes for Resident Evil Village and Gran Turismo 7, which will both be free for folks who already own them. As you’ve probably already heard, original PS VR games won’t play on PS VR2. However, several developers have created PS VR2 versions of existing games and some are offering free upgrades. Unlike with PS VR, you don't need to plug in a camera to your PS5 to use PS VR2. You can, however, film yourself while playing by connecting a PS5 HD Camera.

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Microsoft is holding a press event tomorrow, with ChatGPT expected to feature heavily

Microsoft may show just how cozy it's getting with OpenAI.

Microsoft isn’t going to let Google get the jump on the AI chatbot buzz. It has an event today, at 1 PM ET. The company is keeping tightlipped, but it's expected to show its integration of ChatGPT into Bing and other uses of the conversational AI technology. Microsoft first invested in OpenAI in 2019 and backed the startup again in 2021. Last month, it committed to a "multibillion-dollar" deal unofficially believed to be worth $10 billion over several years. Microsoft has had some misses with chatbots in the past – hopefully, this will be different. Does this mean I’ll actually start using Bing?

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AI Seinfeld was surreal fun until it called being trans an illness

“Where’d everybody go?” the Jerry character asked after a transphobic rant.

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Twitch

Twitch has banned “Nothing, Forever,” the AI-generated Seinfeld stream, for at least 14 days following a transphobic and homophobic outburst. It’s the latest example of “hate in, hate out” when AI chatbots are trained on offensive content without adequate moderation. As reported by Vice, during one of the recent AI-scripted standup acts, the Seinfeld counterpart suggested being transgender is a mental illness. In what almost seemed like an awareness of the material’s offensiveness, the AI comedian quickly added, “But no one is laughing, so I’m going to stop. Thanks for coming out tonight. See you next time. Where’d everybody go?”

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Tinder adds an incognito mode

The app will flag more examples of harmful language, too.

Tinder is rolling out some new safety features and updates in time for Valentine's Day. Users will now be able to take advantage of an incognito mode, which Tinder says is a "step up" from hiding your profile completely. Only folks you Like will see you in their recommendations. In addition, you can block profiles that pop up in your suggestions, which could mitigate some awkwardness if you spot an ex or someone else from your life.

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The Morning After: Google's ChatGPT rival is called Bard