On February 7, 2023, Google announced its new AI chatbot Bard, which was designed to help people understand complex topics. However, in a promotional video, Google Bard Mistake made a factual error when he was asked about the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). The video showed Bard answering the question, “What new discoveries from the James Webb Space Telescope can I tell my 9-year-old about?” Bard responded with three bullet points, including one that stated that the telescope “took the very first pictures of a planet outside of our own solar system.” This was incorrect, as the first image of an exoplanet was taken by the European Very Large Telescope (VLT) in 2004.
The error was quickly spotted by astronomers and other experts, who criticized Google for not fact-checking the information before releasing the video. The mistake also led to a decline in Google’s stock price, which lost $100 billion in value in the following days. If you want to know how Google Bard is better as a competitor.
Google has since apologized for the error and said that it is working to improve the accuracy of Bard’s responses. However, the incident has raised concerns about the reliability of AI chatbots and the need for more rigorous testing before they are released to the public.
Here are some of the reactions to the incident:
“This is a major setback for Google and its AI chatbot efforts. It shows that the technology is still not ready for prime time.” – Chris Harrison, a fellow at Newcastle University
“This is a reminder that AI chatbots are still learning and can make mistakes. It’s important to be aware of this when using them.” – Dr. Andrew Ng, a leading AI researcher
“Google needs to do more to ensure that its AI chatbots are accurate and reliable. This incident is a wake-up call for the company.”
The incident with Bard is a reminder that AI chatbots are still in their early stages of development. While they have the potential to be very helpful, they are not yet perfect. It is important to be aware of this when using them and to be prepared for the possibility of errors.
The Misleading Promotion and Astronomers’ Response
In the promotional video, Bard was asked about the discoveries made by the James Webb Space Telescope. The bot erroneously claimed that the telescope was the first to capture images of a planet beyond our solar system, a milestone actually achieved by the European Very Large Telescope in 2004. Astronomers quickly pointed out this error on Twitter, questioning why Google Bard mistake hadn’t fact-checked the example before sharing it.
Pressure from Microsoft’s ChatGPT and Bing
Google has been under pressure since the introduction of Microsoft-backed OpenAI’s ChatGPT software, which gained popularity for its ability to pass exams, compose songs, and answer various questions. Microsoft further announced integrating ChatGPT technology into its revamped Bing search engine. While investors have shown enthusiasm for AI advancements, skeptics have raised concerns about rushing the technology and the potential for errors, skewed results, and plagiarism.
Google’s Response and Testing Process
A Google spokesperson acknowledged the importance of a rigorous testing process, emphasizing their Trusted Tester program, where external feedback and internal testing will ensure Bard’s responses meet high standards of quality, safety, and accuracy. The spokesperson highlighted the lessons learned from this Google Bard mistake.
Market Reaction and the AI Arms Race
The stock market’s reaction to the blunder revealed the increasing significance of the AI arms race. Alphabet’s shares experienced a substantial decline, losing $170 billion in market value. Investors’ focus on AI innovations overshadowed the company’s fundamental performance. Microsoft, on the other hand, received a positive response from analysts after incorporating ChatGPT technology into its products.
Competition and Future Prospects
Nvidia and other smaller AI-focused companies had previously dominated AI-related speculations in the US stock market. However, with the recent developments by Google and Microsoft, the AI competition has intensified. Chinese tech giants like Baidu, Alibaba, and NetEase have also announced plans to enhance their AI capabilities, leading to gains in their respective shares. Despite Alphabet’s setback, experts believe it is too early to determine a winner in the generative AI race and expect both Google and Microsoft to be leaders in the field.
Challenges and the Impact on Google’s Search Reputation
Google Bard mistake faces the challenge of integrating AI technology into its search engine to keep pace with potential changes brought by conversational AI. The introduction of Bard and its inaccuracies risk undermining Google’s reputation for providing reliable information. Experts have warned about the potential spread of incorrect information through large languages AI models like ChatGPT and Bard. Google plans to test Bard rigorously with trusted testers before making it available to the public.
Google’s Need for a New AI Strategy
Google must reconsider its AI strategy to effectively compete with Microsoft and stop investing more resources into its underperforming chatbot, Bard. Over the past six months, Google has struggled to establish its AI credentials, lagging behind with Bard’s lackluster performance compared to rival offerings. Internal reports indicate a company in disarray and urgency. The annual I/O conference serves as an opportunity for Google to regain public trust and satisfy shareholders, but it requires a fresh approach.
Missed Opportunities in AI Exploration and Experimentation
Undeniably, Google leads in AI research, with credit for developing the transformative transformer architecture that powers chatbots like ChatGPT. However, the company has failed to transform its expertise into engaging AI products that captivate the public’s imagination. It has missed the essence of the AI zeitgeist, which thrives on exploration, experimentation, and a sense of creative chaos, despite the discussions around existential risks and economic implications.
AI Art and Tools Shaping the Cultural Moment
The current cultural landscape increasingly revolves around AI art and tools. This cultural shift stems from two primary factors. Firstly, the technical ecosystem surrounding AI is iterative and relatively open, with various significant AI models available as open source, shared, or leaked. Even traditionally closed-off companies like OpenAI swiftly provide updates and enticing opportunities for developers. Secondly, the outputs of AI systems define the contemporary cultural moment. From Balenciaga Harry Potter to AI-generated deep fakes, AI-powered creativity entertains and sometimes stirs controversy.
Microsoft’s Iterative and Experimental Approach
This failure becomes particularly evident in Google’s AI language models and its chatbot, Bard, especially when compared to Microsoft’s Bing. Engaging with Bard feels like being trapped in an AI daycare, restricted to predefined questions and receiving bland and uninspiring answers. In contrast, Bing feels like a helpful sidekick that fosters conversation, offering clickable sources and positioning itself as a companion rather than an authoritative entity. Bing’s design encourages exploration, making users feel supported while navigating the vast web of information.
Finding Answers for Google’s AI Challenges
The disparity in UI choices between the two chatbots reflects more significant differences in Google’s and Microsoft’s approaches to AI. While Bard remains stagnant with minimal updates since its launch, Microsoft actively iterates and incorporates chatbots into various products, continuously enhancing Bing with new features such as image generation and integration with apps like WolframAlpha and OpenTable. Microsoft’s commitment to experimentation aligns with the current landscape.
Demonstrating Potential and Excitement at I/O Conference
Finding a definitive answer to Google’s predicament is challenging. Personally, I believe that chatbots, as they exist today, are not a suitable replacement for traditional search. Persistent issues like “hallucinations” cannot be overlooked. However, at the I/O conference, Google must demonstrate its recognition of the potential and excitement surrounding this technology. CEO Sundar Pichai’s past comparisons of AI to electricity or fire, although seemingly empty, should be replaced with tangible innovations from human ingenuity. Let’s witness what humans can truly create.
Google’s Failure to Embrace the AI Zeitgeist
Of course, not all AI experiments are commendable, as some are malicious or poorly designed. Nonetheless, the collective impact of this work, both positive and negative, contributes to a dynamic and ever-changing technological landscape characterized by experimentation and cultural significance. Unfortunately, Google Bard’s mistake has failed to align itself with this tide, despite its expertise.
Google’s blunder with its AI bot Bard and the subsequent drop in share prices highlight the challenges and competition in the field of artificial intelligence. The race to develop generative AI models and their integration into products like search engines has become a critical factor for investors. Google aims to recover from this setback by improving its testing processes and ensuring the quality and accuracy of Bard’s responses.