Bing, Bard, and ChatGPT: AI chatbots are rewriting the internet


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Big players, including Microsoft, with its Bing AI (and Copilot), Google, with Bard, and OpenAI, with ChatGPT-4, are making AI chatbot technology previously restricted to test labs more accessible to the general public.

We’ve even tested all three chatbots head to head to see which one is the best, or at least which one gives us the best responses right now when it comes to pressing questions like “How do I install RAM into my PC?”

How do these Large Language Model (LLM) programs work? OpenAI’s GPT-3 told us that AI uses “a series of autocomplete-like programs to learn language” and that these programs analyze “the statistical properties of the language” to “make educated guesses based on the words you’ve typed previously.” 

Or, in the words of James Vincent, a human person, “These AI tools are vast autocomplete systems, trained to predict which word follows the next in any given sentence. As such, they have no hard-coded database of ‘facts’ to draw on — just the ability to write plausible-sounding statements. This means they have a tendency to present false information as truth since whether a given sentence sounds plausible does not guarantee its factuality.”

But there are so many more pieces to the AI landscape that are coming into play — and there are going to be problems — but you can be sure to see it all unfold here on The Verge.

  • Mar 23Mitchell Clark and James Vincent

    ChatGPT now supports plug-ins that let the chatbot tap new sources of information, including the web and third-party sites like Expedia and Instacart.

  • Mar 22Emma Roth

    IFTTT is bringing another layer of automation to its service, which now lets subscribers make applets with AI-generated summaries, social media posts, and blogs.

  • Mar 21David Pierce

    After a few hours of chatting, I haven’t found a new side of Bard. I also haven’t found much it does well.

  • Mar 21David Pierce

    Bard is not a good search engine. Neither are ChatGPT and Bing. Figuring out what they’re actually good at and how we should use them is going to take a while.

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    Mar 20Emma Roth

    Is AI progressing too fast?

    Between Microsoft, Google, and now Meta developing AI tools, things have been moving at an alarmingly fast rate. Our friends over at Vox have some of the reasons why we should hit pause on the rapid development of AI (read: potential alignment issues), along with the most common objections to stopping progress and why they might not hold up:

    There are many objections to the idea, ranging from “technological development is inevitable so trying to slow it down is futile” to “we don’t want to lose an AI arms race with China” to “the only way to make powerful AI safe is to first play with powerful AI.”

    But these objections don’t necessarily stand up to scrutiny when you think through them. In fact, it is possible to slow down a developing technology. And in the case of AI, there’s good reason to think that would be a very good idea.

  • Mar 20Emma Roth

    Google is giving some Pixel Superfans the chance to try out Bard first.

    The company’s ChatGPT competitor, Bard, isn’t publicly available yet, but Google’s allowing a “small, randomly selected group of Pixel Superfans” to get access first.

    To be clear, Google isn’t letting Superfans try out Bard right away; it’s just putting them on a waitlist for early access once they sign up. Here’s part of the email Google’s sending to users.

  • Mar 16Tom Warren and Richard Lawler

    The AI-powered ‘knowledge navigator’ syncs your documents, emails, and more to create summaries and even suggestions.

  • Mar 16Tom Warren

    Copilot is a modern AI assistant that will help Microsoft 365 users create Office documents.

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    Mar 15Richard Lawler

    Apple has generative AI plans, too.

    Within an article examining the shortfalls of AI voice helpers over the last few years, like Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri, the New York Times has a note about Apple’s internal tech demos:

    At Apple’s headquarters last month, the company held its annual A.I. summit, an internal event for employees to learn about its large language model and other A.I. tools, two people who were briefed on the program said. Many engineers, including members of the Siri team, have been testing language-generating concepts every week, the people said.

    Of course, not everyone’s sure they want these freestyling AI bots taking control of their smart home devices.

  • Mar 14Emma Roth

    Anthropic says its chatbot is ‘less likely to produce harmful outputs’ than some of its competitors, like Microsoft’s GPT-4-powered Bing.

  • Mar 14Jay Peters

    Microsoft’s new AI-powered Bing chatbot has been relying on the newly announced GPT-4 model all along.

  • Mar 13Emma Roth

    Microsoft says it connected tens of thousands of Nvidia A100 chips and reworked server racks to build the hardware behind ChatGPT and its own Bing AI bot.

  • Mar 13Allegra Rosenberg

    AI chat systems put a new, sometimes solipsistic twist on the fannish roleplaying tradition.

  • Mar 9Tom Warren

    Microsoft is making it easier for developers and businesses to integrate ChatGPT into their applications.

  • Mar 9Tom Warren

    Discord is using OpenAI’s technology to improve its Clyde bot, moderation tools, and platform features.

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    Mar 9James Vincent

    Grammarly adds to its editing skills with AI suggestions.

    Grammarly is best known for checking your grammar and spelling, but will soon generate new text suggestions based on what you’re writing. It’s called GrammarlyGo and it’s out in April.

    Alongside similar features from Microsoft, Google, Notion, and others, soon you won’t be able to write a single word without a half-dozen AIs trying to edit you. Best to leave them to it.

  • Mar 7Mitchell Clark

    Google is expected to have more than 20 artificial intelligence products launching this year and will show many of them off during I/O.

  • Mar 7Emma Roth

    Like Microsoft and Google, Slack owner Salesforce is shoving an AI chatbot into its workplace software to automatically write simple messages and summarize meetings.

  • Mar 6Emma Roth

    Google has all kinds of AI tech in development, including this Universal Speech Model, that’s part of its attempt to build a model that can understand the world’s 1,000 most-spoken languages.

  • Mar 5Emma Roth

    From Google’s Bard to Microsoft’s new Bing, here are all the major contenders in the AI chatbot space.

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    Mar 4Richard Lawler

    Apple isn’t placing new restrictions on AI features in apps, at least not yet.

    On Thursday, the developer of BlueMail — who has squared off with Apple over its App Store policies before — said the company held up an update adding ChatGPT-powered email generation and other features.

    A reviewer said his app needed to add content moderation or else restrict access to ages 17 and up, but then later, the same update was approved, unchanged. The App Store doesn’t have policies about AI specifically, so we can only wait and see if it tightens restrictions further,

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    Mar 3Richard Lawler

    Bing AI patch notes.

    If you’re trying to keep pace with what’s happening in generative AI, look no further than Microsoft’s Bing Blog, which has posted details of what’s new in the preview release of its ChatBot and promises regular updates to summarize what they’re learning.

    That includes the Chat Tones to tune its personality, Turn Counters, and other changes this time around, but my main question is, do they use Bing AI to write up the summaries?

  • Mar 2Tom Warren

    Microsoft restricted Bing AI in recent days after wild responses, but a new toggle lets the chatbot get more creative once again.

  • Mar 1Mitchell Clark

    Now developers can officially integrate ChatGPT into their products and services. Get ready, y’all.

  • Feb 28Tom Warren

    A big new Windows 11 update is now available that also includes Phone Link for iOS, a touch-optimized taskbar, and much more.

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    Feb 28Richard Lawler

    Are you exaggerating what your AI product can do?

    The FTC is casually warning companies to not do that in their advertisements, despite all of the current hype around AI bots and generative technology of all types.

    Does the product actually use AI at all? 

    If you think you can get away with baseless claims that your product is AI-enabled, think again. In an investigation, FTC technologists and others can look under the hood and analyze other materials to see if what’s inside matches up with your claims. Before labeling your product as AI-powered, note also that merely using an AI tool in the development process is not the same as a product having AI in it.

  • Feb 27Emma Roth

    Zuckerberg says the company is building AI-powered tools for WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram.

  • Feb 27Jennifer Pattison Tuohy

    This proof-of-concept video by shows how AI language models could finally make your smart home voice assistant, well, actually smart.

  • Feb 27Alex Heath

    The ‘My AI’ bot will initially only be available to paying Snapchat Plus subscribers. CEO Evan Spiegel says it’s just the beginning for the company’s generative AI plans.

  • Feb 25Mia Sato

    Prominent science fiction and fantasy magazine Clarkesworld announced it would pause submissions after a flood of AI spam. It’s not the only outlet getting AI-generated stories.

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  • Feb 24James Vincent and Jay Peters

    This isn’t a system you can talk to but, rather, a research tool that Meta is hoping others will use to solve some of the problems that plague AI language models.

  • Feb 23Tom Warren

    Microsoft’s Bing AI chatbot history dates back at least six years, with Sydney first appearing in 2021.

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    Feb 22Elizabeth Lopatto

    Can you think like an AI?

    The game is to guess the secret word. The hitch is that the AI is classifying what words are alike. Yesterday’s word was “grasshopper,” and the AI thought “ant” was closer than “cricket.” Maybe that’s true if you’re analyzing texts to predict the next word — after all, there’s a fable about an ant and a grasshopper — but “cricket” and “grasshopper” are synonyms!

  • Feb 22James Vincent

    Yes, you can now speak directly to Bing or add it to a Skype conversation if you’re feeling particularly lonely.

  • Feb 22James Vincent

    Chinese tech giants have reportedly been told not to offer public access to the US-developed ChatGPT. These companies have already had to censor the output of AI tools like image generators.

  • Feb 21Richard Lawler

    If you need to use AI to respond to a tragedy, maybe it’s better to say nothing at all.

    The Vanderbilt Hustler reports the school’s Peabody Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is apologizing after sending a message regarding the shooting at Michigan State University that was “paraphrased” from OpenAI’s ChatGPT model (via Gizmodo).

    The generic-sounding email lacks any kind of personal touch, and responses to it reflect that, as noted by this quote from Vanderbilt student Laith Kayat:

    Deans, provosts, and the chancellor: Do more. Do anything. And lead us into a better future with genuine, human empathy, not a robot

    In the wake of the Michigan shootings, let us come together as a community to reaffirm our commitment to caring for one another and promoting a culture of inclusivity on our campus. By doing so, we can honor the victims of this tragedy and work towards a safer, more compassionate future for all. (Paraphrase from OpenAI’s ChatGPT AI language model, personal communication, February 15, 2023).

    In the wake of the Michigan shootings, let us come together as a community to reaffirm our commitment to caring for one another and promoting a culture of inclusivity on our campus. By doing so, we can honor the victims of this tragedy and work towards a safer, more compassionate future for all. (Paraphrase from OpenAI’s ChatGPT AI language model, personal communication, February 15, 2023).

    Image: Peabody Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI)

  • Feb 21Richard Lawler

    Last week, Microsoft limited how much people could talk to Bing, and after complaints, it’s expanding access again.

  • Feb 20Alex Cranz

    AI-spam has driven one of the best science fiction and fantasy magazines to close submissions.

    Clarkesworld has always been a great place to submit your short fiction because they respond fast and pay well. There’s not a lot of waiting to learn if you’ve been accepted or not. Unfortunately, the Hugo-winning magazine has been forced to temporarily stop accepting submissions because it was getting hit with too many AI-generated submissions. Submissions will reopen eventually, but editor Neil Clarke says the current tools for spotting AI-generated submissions aren’t “reliable enough.”

  • Feb 17Tom Warren

    Microsoft’s new limits mean Bing chatbot users can only ask a maximum of five questions per session and 50 in total per day.

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    Feb 17Elizabeth Lopatto

    “They don’t actually tell us this is Bard, but this has Bard’s fingerprints all over it.”

    AI is based on low-paid labor. This interview with one of the people who help decide what Google will show you is worth a read — for starters, he says he makes $3 less per hour than his daughter, who works in fast food.

  • Feb 16Adi Robertson

    A search engine that guilt-trips you isn’t just creepy — it’s bad product design.

  • Feb 16Tom Warren

    Microsoft says the new AI-powered Bing is getting daily improvements as it responds to feedback on mistakes, tone, and data.

  • Feb 15James Vincent

    Microsoft’s AI chatbot has been online for less than a fortnight and is already going wild.

  • Feb 15Tom Warren

    Microsoft says it’s now testing the new Bing in 169 countries and that millions have signed up to the waitlist.

  • Feb 15James Vincent

    We’re all living through our own personal AI hype cycle.

    If you’ve been playing around with ChatGPT or Bing’s AI chatbot you’ll know exactly what this guy is talking about. Also, “spicy autocomplete” is very good — apologies if we steal that Mike.

  • Feb 15Richard Lawler

    Sometimes AI chatbot responses are clear, detailed, and wrong.

    From last week’s Vergecast: there’s one small problem with this Bing AI response about The Verge’s history with Elon Musk and Elon Musk impersonators.

  • Feb 14Mia Sato

    The website announced last month that it would use OpenAI tools to assist with content creation.

  • Feb 14Tom Warren

    Bing AI often refers to itself as Sydney, but Microsoft says that was an internal codename for a chat experience it was previously working on.

  • Feb 14Jess Weatherbed

    Do my AI’s deceive me, or have my AIs been deceived?

    Scientists at the University of Chicago have created Glaze, a tool that could help artists prevent their artwork from being replicated by AI art generators by invisibly mimicking a different art style.

    Glaze isn’t available just yet and the team acknowledges it isn’t a perfect solution, but it could help bridge the gap while copyright protections catch up with generative AI technology.

    Before and after comparisons of Karla Ortiz’s artwork when using Glaze. The images masked with Glazed appear in a different art style after being fed into an AI art generator.

    Before and after comparisons of Karla Ortiz’s artwork when using Glaze. The images masked with Glazed appear in a different art style after being fed into an AI art generator.

    Glazed artwork looks completely unchanged to the naked eye, but pixel-level alterations can fool AI art generators into emulating a different art style.
    Image: Ben Zhao

  • Feb 14Tom Warren

    Bing AI users have found that Microsoft’s chatbot is making a lot of mistakes. It even made financial errors during Microsoft’s first demos.

  • Feb 11Emma Roth

    The company’s testing a new AI-powered ‘shorten’ feature that provides bulleted summaries of the article or webpage you’re reading.

  • Feb 10Jay Peters

    ‘There will always be a need for genuine community and human connection, which can be aided by tools like this.’

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    Feb 10Sean Hollister

    “ChatGPT is a blurry JPEG of the Web.”

    When I saw this headline, I figured it was some offhand remark — but no, this entire remarkable essay explores chatbots through the lens of lossy image compression algorithms, and it makes an awful lot of sense. (I’m worrying about bitrot already.)

    Oh, and this author also penned the short story that became the award-winning movie Arrival.

  • Feb 10Jess Weatherbed

    AI art studio proves its work is worth at least a gift card.

    The studio won a $100 gift voucher given to first-place entries of Australian retailer DigiDirect’s weekly photo contest (seen via PetaPixel), and admitted the image was Ai-generated after the fact. No word on what it’ll spend the voucher on. Perhaps a camera?

    A photograph generated with artificial intelligence. The image shows a top-down view of an ocean wave being hit by orange sunlight.

    A photograph generated with artificial intelligence. The image shows a top-down view of an ocean wave being hit by orange sunlight.

    This Ai-generated “drone shot” was apparently submitted as an experiment to see if it could pass for a real photograph.
    Image: Absolutely Ai

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