Google is not going to let Microsoft or any other company challenge its status as the leading search engine. The company has announced the upcoming release of its chatbot, Bard, in response to the successful AI chatbot, ChatGPT, created by OpenAI with Microsoft’s support.
Bard’s technology has been around for a while, but it was not publicly available until now. Two years ago, Google introduced LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications) which will power Bard. LaMDA gained notoriety when a former Google engineer claimed the chatbot had developed sentience, but these claims were discredited by the AI industry.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced in a blog post that Bard is currently available for testing by select individuals. The goal of Bard is to make a large amount of information accessible through conversation-based interfaces. It uses a scaled-down version of LaMDA and aims to make the chatbot widely available for collecting user feedback to improve its accuracy and quality.
Despite Google’s expertise in the type of AI used by ChatGPT, they have been slow to release their tools to the public. They previously made LaMDA accessible through their AI Test Kitchen app, but it was limited to producing text for only a few inquiries.
The integration of AI chatbots into Google’s search raises potential concerns as they rely on online data and may reinforce biases and spread false information.
Google have engaged a group of individuals from diverse backgrounds and locations who are not affiliated with Google. These testers assess Google’s products to assist the company in improving their offerings and to gain insight into how users are likely to perceive these products. Google mentioned that they partner with an external supplier for this testing process. It is not clear at this time if there is an opportunity for individuals to test the Bard product prior to its wider release.