WIRED: Generative AI Startups at the Birth of the AI Boom and Why It Is Important to Write Animators? A Tale of Two Artists
Generative AI enthusiasts predict the technology will take root in all kinds of industries and will do much more than just spit out images or sentences. David Song, a senior at Stanford University who is tracking the boom, has collated a list of over 100 generative AI startups. They’re working on applications that include generating music, game development, writing assistants, customer service bots, coding aids, and video editing tech. Guo has invested in a company that plans to generate legal contracts from a text description—a potentially lucrative application if it can work reliably.
Something weird is happening in the world of AI. The field burst out of its lethargy early in the century with the innovation of deep learning led by three academics. This approach to AI transformed the field and made many of our applications more useful, powering language translations, search, Uber routing, and just about everything that has “smart” as part of its name. We’ve been in the Artificial Intelligence springtime for a dozen years. But in the past year or so there has been a dramatic aftershock to that earthquake as a sudden profusion of mind-bending generative models have appeared.
Stability AI, which offers tools for generating images with few restrictions, held a party of its own in San Francisco last week. It announced $101 million in new funding, valuing the company at a dizzy $1 billion. The gathering attracted tech celebrities including Google cofounder Sergey Brin.
The advent of artificial intelligence in the creation of art has not been welcomed in the creative community. Some artists have embraced the new tech; others believe it’s #notreal. We at WIRED have spent a lot of time sorting out our own reactions. Undeniably, the technology comes with issues—economic, ethical, legal. At the same time, it expands opportunities for art and artistry. WIRED will be on the side of the future. It means not allowing new tools to replace human creators.
Dan Winters said using the technology was entertaining and inspiring. The cover was a better one than the one that ran, so I was thrilled with the result.
Margaret is trying to better articulate the differences between DALL-E and working with an illustrator. This is the spot I landed due to the fact that DALL-E works in a more realistic world of “things.” Also, it gave me re-interpretations of the information that I gave. I think the most important aspect is that. Illustrators think differently than I do. They take the information that I supply, and then they expand on it. They do their own supplementary research, and they offer alternate approaches and unexpected solutions. The DALL-E results were based on random data-crunching from the details that I provided, and some were unexpected for sure. I didn’t get innovative solutions because I didn’t offer the unexpected ideas in the prompt. AI (or at least this version thereof) has a huge reserve of data, but not the curiosity and the experience to look at a concept from a different POV—an artist’s POV. I don’t see severing ties with my illustrator database anytime soon.”
Most of the toys Google demoed on the pier in New York showed the fruits of generative models like its flagship large language model, called LaMDA. It can answer questions and work with creative writers to make stories. Other projects can help to produce 3D images from text prompt or even help to produce videos by creating storyboard-like suggestions on a scene by scene basis. But a big piece of the program dealt with some of the ethical issues and potential dangers of unleashing robot content generators on the world. The company was careful in how it employed its powerful creations. The most telling statement came from Douglas Eck, a principal scientist at Google Research. “Generative AI models are powerful—there’s no doubt about that,” he said. We need to realize that the technology can pose real risks which is why we haven’t released them yet. And I’m proud we’ve been slow to release them.”
On February 8th, it’s expected that Google will announce artificial intelligence integration for its search engine. It’s free to watch live on YouTube.
Google commanded the online search business for years, while Microsoft’s Bing remained a distant competitor. Microsoft, an OpenAI investor, plans to weave generative AI into its search engine in an effort to differentiate the experience from Google and attract more users. Will this year be a renaissance for Bing? Users will soon see more text composed by machine as they explore their search engine of choice.
Not to be left behind by Bing’s new Artificial Intelligence, GOOGLE will release a competitor called Bard in the near future. (The name was chosen to reflect the creative nature of the algorithm underneath, one Googler tells me.) The underlying technology was shown to answer some internet searches and the company said it would make the artificial intelligence behind the platform available to developers. The majority of the company’s revenue comes from its search business, so it’s not easy for the company to be upstaged. And its AI researchers may be understandably a little miffed since they actually developed the machine learning algorithm at the heart of ChatGPT, known as a transformer, as well as a key technique used to make AI imagery, known as diffusion modeling.
The all-new Bing is similarly chatty. Demos that the company gave at its headquarters in Redmond, and a quick test drive by WIRED’s Aarian Marshall, who attended the event, show that it can effortlessly generate a vacation itinerary, summarize the key points of product reviews, and answer tricky questions, like whether an item of furniture will fit in a particular car. It’s a long ways from Microsoft’s idiotic and pointless Office assistant, which can be a problem for some readers.
In case you have been living in outer space for a while, you’ll know that people are losing their minds over the ability to answer questions in remarkably coherent and seemingly insightful and creative ways. Want to understand quantum computing? Need a recipe for whatever’s in the fridge? I can’t write that high school essay. ChatGPT has your back.
Last but by no means least in the new AI search wars is Baidu, China’s biggest search company. It is joined by another competitor, “Enie Bot”, in English. Baidu says it will release the bot after completing internal testing this March.
Jasper, GenAI, a New Jersey banquet: Why there is no room for the generative artificial intelligence conference on Valentine’s Day?
Dave is not confident that many people will show up for the generative artificial intelligence conference. It was all planned sort of last-minute, and the event was somehow scheduled for Valentine’s Day. If the views of the bay just out the windows of San Francisco’s Embarcadero were jaw-slackening, surely people wouldrather be with their loved ones than in a conference hall.
But Jasper’s “GenAI” event sold out. The crowd of lanyard wearing people gathered at the coffee bar to the stage this past Tuesday and by the time they got to the stage, they were standing room only. The pink and purple lighting on the walls was as subtle as a New Jersey wedding banquet.
OpenAI, Ask Jeeves, Google, Jasper: The Sunny Side of Big Tech, and the Challenges of Tech Existentialism
Openai, another company with artificial intelligence, came up with a simple search box last year. AI got a UI. And suddenly, we understood. For the modern era, it was called Ask Jeeves. A new kind of search that interpreted our dumb questions and spit out smart answers (or at least, smart-sounding). Microsoft invested in OpenAI, launched a chatbot within Bing, and made a comment about it. Google noticed, too, and recently demoed its own version of a chatbot-powered search tool. Jasper, a company that sells artificial intelligence tools to business users, is facing the challenge of tech existentialism. There’s the sunny side of all that attention, and the shadow of Big Tech looming over you.