Google and Baidu challenge OpenAI’s ChatGPT, the popular AI-based chat on which Microsoft is increasingly betting, announcing respectively the chatbot technologies Bard and ‘Ernie bot’ (in English) or “Wenxin Yiyan” (in Chinese). Will the next battle between the hi-tech giants be fought in the AI (Artificial Intelligence) arena?
Yesterday, Monday 6 February, Google (the American giant headed by the Alphabet holding company) made its big announcement on the launch of Bard. It is precisely a chatbot technology that is based on artificial intelligence.
For those who are not experts in the sector, it is worth reading the definition of chatbot given by Microsoft itself:
“Chatbots use artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP) to help users interact with web services or apps via text, graphics or speech. Chatbots can understand natural human language, simulate human conversations, and perform simple, automated tasks. Chatbots are used across a variety of channels, such as messaging apps, mobile apps, websites, phone lines, and voice-enabled apps.”
Basically, underlines Microsoft, “a chatbot is a software application used to interact with human conversations in a natural way”.
Returning to Google, rumors about the Bard project had already circulated in recent days. It is a chatbot based on Google’s LaMda technology (Language Model for Dialogue Applications), which is based on Gpt language models: the same models on which the now very famous ChatGPT of OpenAI on which the giant Microsoft is aiming for nothing.
The technology is a model of human language processing, which means that the user who uses it has the impression that he is practically talking to a fellow human being.
ChatGPT fever is all written in the numbers: Since it launched at the end of November, ChatGPT has garnered a million users in less than a week.
Regarding Bard, Google has disclosed a plan whereby trusted experts will test the technology before making it available to the public. “Soon, you’ll see AI-enhanced features in (Google’s) Search that will synthesize complex information and multiple perspectives into easy-to-digest formats, allowing you to quickly grasp the concept and learn more from the Web: whether it’s look for additional perspectives, such as those of the blogs of people who play both pianos and guitars, or delve into a certain topic,” explained Google CEO Sundar Pichai, according to what emerges from the giant’s press release.
“AI (Artificial Intelligence, AI in Italian) is the most in-depth technology we are working on today. Whether it’s helping doctors detect diseases earlier or enabling people to access information in their own language, AI helps people, businesses and communities unleash their potential. And it opens up new opportunities that could significantly improve billions of lives. This is why we steered our company towards AI six years ago. And that’s why we see it as the most important tool that will allow us to achieve our mission: to organize the world‘s information and make it universally accessible and useful”.
Google gave a concrete example of how Bard could be used to simplify complex topics: the AI chatbot in the example explained NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope JWST to a 9-year-old boy.
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The Chinese giant Baidu also got busy: the stock soared by more than 13% on the Hong Kong stock exchange after the Big Tech made in China announced the launch of its own artificial intelligence chatbot.
Specifically, Baidu’s shares jumped to $159.80 Hong Kong dollars, +13.48%, rocketing to a record high since mid-February 2022, after the giant issued a statement announcing that internal tests it has launched on its own AI chatbot project will be completed probably in March. This means that the chatbot can be launched to the public soon after, with the name of “Ernie bot” in English, and “Wenxin Yiyan” in Chinese.
In particular Ernie is the acronym of “Enhanced Representation through Knowledge Integration”, according to what was announced by Baidu itself, which specified that “what distinguishes ERNIE from other language models is the integration of its broad knowledge with a quantity huge amount of data, a factor that translates into exceptional understanding and generation capabilities”.
Will 2023 be the year of the AI boom? One thing is certain: chatbot or not, AI is becoming increasingly popular in the world of trading and finance in general. So much so that more than half of those who responded to a survey by JPMorgan Chase & Co., 835 institutional and professional traders, said these technologies will have the greatest influence on trading in the next three years, an increase compared to a quarter of 2022.
“This automation trend is something we are seeing across the market and it is expanding into credit and rates as well as commodities,” said Scott Wacker, head of FICC e-commerce sales at JPMorgan , referring to what quantitative hedge funds themselves are doing
And so commented the news of Microsoft’s investment in OpenAI Tejas Dessai, Technology Analyst of Global X:
“The success of Chat GPT is a paradigm shift in the path of Artificial Intelligence, which brings it closer to concrete use cases through which it can add real value for companies and consumers, becoming more accessible and economical. The agreement (between Microsoft and OpenAI) definitively brings the theme of artificial intelligence back on the crest of the wave”.
It is not for nothing that the analyst expects “that the big tech giants, all of which have invested heavily in AI and have large capitals and easy access to the best talent on the market, will accelerate their AI projects to catch up and move quickly from research and development of concrete applications. In parallel, we expect the AI theme to become extremely popular among venture capital investors as well.”
In short, artificial intelligence will appeal to everyone