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Friday, Dec 01, 2023

of Alphabet's generative AI chatbot, but faced privacy concerns and regulation discussions

of Alphabet's generative AI chatbot, but faced privacy concerns and regulation discussions

Google's parent company Alphabet has expanded its AI chatbot Bard to Europe and Brazil, marking the biggest expansion since its launch in the US and UK in March.
Bard is an example of generative AI, which can respond to questions in a human-like way, similar to Microsoft's ChatGPT.

However, Bard's launch in the European Union was held up due to privacy concerns raised by the main data regulator in the bloc.

The Irish Data Protection Commission had concerns about how Bard protects Europeans' privacy, but Alphabet has since met with the watchdog to address these concerns.

Bard is an experiment, and the company wants to be "bold and responsible," said Amar Subramanya, engineering vice president of Bard.

Users can opt out of data collection, and Bard can talk and respond to prompts that include images in addition to its previous features.

The hype around generative AI has prompted global tech figures to call for a halt on its development, with companies investing billions of dollars in the hope of generating more revenue from advertising and cloud services.

Mistral AI, a start-up that was only a month old, recently received £86m in seed funding to build and train large language models.

Elon Musk has also announced the formation of an AI start-up called xAI, with a team that includes engineers from OpenAI and Google.

Musk has previously stated that he believes AI developments should be paused and that the sector needs regulation.

Anthropic, an American AI company, has also launched a rival chatbot to ChatGPT called Claude 2, which can summarize novel-sized blocks of text.

However, recent web user numbers show that traffic to ChatGPT's website and unique visitors declined for the first time in June.

Google has also faced a fresh class action in the US over the alleged misuse of users' personal information to train Bard.

The complaint, filed in San Francisco federal court by eight individuals seeking to represent millions of internet users and copyright holders, claims that Google's unauthorized scraping of data from websites violated their privacy and property rights.

In summary, Bard's launch in Europe and Brazil marks the biggest expansion
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