Key Highlights from Google I/O 2023

All significant LLMs developed by OpenAI and Anthropic now use Google's Perspective API to evaluate toxicity.
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“AI is having a very busy year,” said Google CEO Sundar Pichai, kickstarting Google I/O 2023 at the Shoreline Amphitheatre. He said, the ‘AI company is reimagining all core products, including search with Generative AI, alongside announcing groundbreaking developments that will reshape the way users interact with the company’s suite of products and services.

Sending Your Emails Just Got Easier 

At this year’s Google I/O conference, Gmail got an interesting new update, where the company introduced a new generative AI feature called ‘Help me Write,’ an extension that expands on the capabilities of Smart Reply and Smart Response. The new features aim to enhance user productivity by providing more comprehensive and refined responses. These updates will be rolled out in conjunction with Workspace updates, elevating the productivity and convenience of Google’s email platform.

Unveils Next Generation LLM, PaLM 2

One of the key highlight of the developers’ conference was PaLM 2. Whose predecessor was announced last year. The new model represents a significant leap forward in AI technology and is set to power over 25 products released by Google. It boasts an expanded language support, enabling collaboration and communication across more than 100 languages. Products such as Gecko, Otter, Bison, and Unicorn, all built on this latest model, showcase Google’s commitment to leveraging AI to deliver innovative and user-friendly experiences.

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PaLM 2, surpasses its predecessor. “As a versatile foundation, it can be customized to cater to specific needs and requirements,” shared Google. 

Med PaLM 2

Google also highlighted Med-PaLM 2, which has been fine-tuned for medical applications, enabling it to analyze X-ray images and generate comprehensive mammography reports independently. Google will let selective users test this cutting-edge technology during the upcoming summer.

“Med-PaLM 2 was the first large language model to perform at an expert level on the US medical licensing exam,” Zoubin Ghahramani, a VP at Google’s DeepMind division said.

Google Bard To Developers’ Rescue  

Sissie Hsiao, VP/GM, Google Assistant and Bard at Google, took the stage to announce the new capabilities of Bard, which is currently built on the foundation of PaLM 2 model. Bard, which has been trained on more than 20+ programming languages, now allows developers to streamline coding and debugging. 

Furthermore, Bard introduced a Dark Theme, catering to developers’ preferences. Additionally, Bard’s update extends to Adobe Firefly and Google Lens, expanding its reach and utility across various platforms and tools.

In addition to this, Bard has now become available in 180 countries and territories, with support for languages beyond English, including Japanese and Korean as a move to promote global accessibility. 

Workspace GenAI’ed

Aparna Pappu, VP of Workspace, reminded attendees of the Help Me Write feature, which was launched to trusted testers in March this year. Pappu unveiled several GenAI features tailored for Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets. These advancements, part of the new Duet AI for Workspace product, will be made available to trusted users and testers later this year, followed by a wider release. Duet AI aims to amplify productivity by harnessing the capabilities of AI to facilitate seamless collaboration and enhance user creativity.

Search Gets Generative AI Boost 

Not to be left behind, the tech giant’s flagship product, Google Search is also set to undergo a transformative upgrade. Cathy Edwards, leading the Search team, announced the integration of generative AI into the search results page, providing users with a comprehensive overview of their queries. The new AI-powered snapshot delivers key information at a glance, empowering users with quick and insightful summaries of their search results. 

Perspective API 

Google also introduced Perspective AI, which has been used by publishers to “mitigate toxicity.” Interestingly, all significant LLMs developed by OpenAI and Anthropic now use Google’s Perspective API to evaluate toxicity generated by their own models.

Introduces Generative AI Capabilities for Google Cloud 

Google also unveiled Duet AI for Google Cloud, an AI-powered collaborator designed to assist cloud users with programming tasks such as contextual code completion, code review, and real-time function generation. It is integrated across Google Cloud platforms, including the IDE, Google Cloud Console, and chat functions. 

In addition to this, Google has introduced new foundation models and capabilities for AI development, including Codey for code generation, Imagen for text-to-image conversions, and Chirp for advanced speech recognition. These models are accessible via APIs and feature enterprise-grade security and reliability. 

Additionally, Google has launched a Text Embeddings API for semantic understanding of text or images, and Reinforcement Learning from Human Feedback (RLHF) for model improvement via human feedback. 

These innovations are supported by Google’s AI-optimized infrastructure, which includes the new A3 Virtual Machines based on NVIDIA’s H100 GPU, offering a broad spectrum of GPU power for AI model training and serving.

Google Cloud chief Thomas Kurian said that Google Cloud’s infrastructure makes large scale training workloads up to 80% faster, and up to 50% cheaper compared to any alternatives out there.

Tasmia Ansari
Tasmia is a tech journalist at AIM, looking to bring a fresh perspective to emerging technologies and trends in data science, analytics, and artificial intelligence.

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