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What is Google Bard? Understanding the New AI-powered Chat Service

April 7, 2023


Google has entered the AI chatbot arena with its latest offering, Google Bard. This new conversational AI chat service aims to compete with OpenAI's ChatGPT and Microsoft's Bing Chat. In this article, we will delve into what makes Google Bard unique, how it compares to its competitors, and the potential impact it could have on the AI landscape.

What is Google Bard

Google Bard: An Introduction

Google Bard is an experimental, conversational AI chat service that was unveiled on February 6, and its waitlist is now open for users in the US and UK. The primary function of this AI chatbot is to assist users with creative tasks, explain complex topics, and distill information from multiple sources. Unlike ChatGPT, Google Bard sources its information directly from the web, utilizing Google's Language Model for Dialogue Applications (LaMDA).

LaMDA: The Technology Behind Google Bard

LaMDA, announced two years ago, is built on Transformer, the neural network architecture developed and open-sourced by Google in 2017. Interestingly, GPT-3, the language model that powers ChatGPT, is also built on Transformer. Google Bard uses a lightweight version of LaMDA that requires less computing power, allowing for easier scalability. Google and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai stated that this approach will provide "fresh, high-quality responses."

This use of LaMDA sets Google Bard apart from other AI chatbots, including ChatGPT and Bing Chat, which rely on large language models (LLMs) in the GPT series. Users can join the Bard waitlist by visiting its homepage, signing in to their Google account, and accepting the terms and conditions. You can understand Bard better by exploring what is ChatGPT

Controversies Surrounding Google Bard

However, Google Bard has faced some controversy. During its launch, a demo of Bard provided inaccurate information about the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). The issue highlighted the importance of rigorous testing, which Google is addressing through its Trusted Tester program. Google's LaMDA also stirred controversy when former Google engineer Blake Lemoine claimed that it might be "sentient." Google denied the allegation and eventually dismissed Lemoine from the company.

Comparing Google Bard to ChatGPT and Bing Chat

What is Google Bard

Google Bard's primary functions include assisting with creative tasks, explaining complex topics, and distilling information from multiple sources. It can also handle nuanced queries, transforming Google from a simple search engine to a capable virtual assistant.

While Bard and ChatGPT both use large language models for open-ended conversations, they differ in their underlying model. ChatGPT is based on GPT-3.5 and GPT-4, while Bard uses Google's LaMDA model. Large language models like LaMDA and ChatGPT may generate inaccurate or biased responses based on their training data, and this has been a significant challenge for Google in the development of Bard.

Access and Integration

Access to Google Bard AI is currently limited to a waitlist for users in the US and UK. Google's Bard differs from ChatGPT in that it has access to live information on the internet, whereas ChatGPT's knowledge is limited to its training data up until 2021. Bard may also be integrated into various non-search Google products such as Android, Chrome OS, Gmail, Docs, and the Chrome web browser, and could potentially offer voice interaction, which is not available in ChatGPT.

The Future of AI Chatbots and Their Impact

As AI systems continue to evolve, their impact on our lives expands, with companies developing technology that will allow users to generate videos simply by typing text into a computer screen. The race to create AI chatbots is a competitive field, with rival technologies like OpenAI's ChatGPT and Microsoft's Bing chatbot already available.

The development of Google Bard is part of Google's cautious approach to AI technology, as the company typically refrains from releasing products until it is confident in their performance. Google has also developed AI image generator Imagen and AI music generator MusicLM, though the latter has no current plans for release due to concerns about misappropriation of creative content, inherent biases, and cultural appropriation.

Bard's Unique Features

Google Bard does not give the same answer every time, generating new text for every prompt. It also annotates some of its responses, allowing users to review the sources of information. The chatbot integrates with Google's vast index of websites, which enables it to provide up-to-date information from the internet. However, it may sometimes cite unreliable sources.

Bard is more cautious than ChatGPT in terms of answering questions about specific people, as it aims to avoid generating incorrect information, a phenomenon referred to as "hallucination" by AI researchers. Additionally, Bard tends to avoid providing medical, legal, or financial advice, as such information might be incorrect and it helps to avoid AI Mistakes.

Google Bard and the Ongoing AI Competition

The language capabilities of Google's Bard are another differentiating factor, as it uses the LaMDA model rather than the GPT-3.5 and GPT-4 models used in ChatGPT and Bing Chat. It remains to be seen if Google's model will perform better than its competitors. Bard delivers shorter responses than ChatGPT, prioritizing quick information discovery over longer content generation. However, Bing Chat has recently introduced a "Creative" mode for generating longer responses.

Google Bard Vs ChatGPT

Conclusion: What is Google Bard's Potential?

In conclusion, Google Bard represents a new milestone in AI chatbot technology, with its unique use of the LaMDA model and its integration with Google's vast index of websites. As Google continues to refine and develop Bard, it will be interesting to see how the AI chatbot landscape evolves and how these AI-powered tools shape the way we interact with information and technology.

While Google Bard may have faced some initial controversies, its cautious approach and focus on user feedback could help the chatbot improve over time. As it stands, Google Bard is an exciting development in the world of AI chatbots, and its impact on the industry will be closely watched by both users and competitors alike.

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