A|I: The AI Times – Meet Google’s answer to ChatGPT

Image of Fei-Fei Li
Fei-Fei Li
Plus: Shopify dabbles in AI, Radical adds Fei-Fei Li.

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Following exit to Live Nation, Universe founders secure $10.8 million for online art marketplace Peggy (BETAKIT)

Peggy, an online social marketplace for contemporary art, has unveiled $10.8 million CAD ($8 million USD) in equity seed funding and launched its platform, which aims to make buying and selling art more flexible.

AI startup Cohere in talks to raise funding at $6 bln plus valuation – sources (REUTERS)

Cohere, an AI foundation model company that competes with Microsoft-backed OpenAI, is in talks to raise hundreds of millions of dollars in a funding round that could value the startup at more than $6 billion, sources told Reuters, in the latest sign of the investment frenzy around generative AI.

Mark Usher named CIBC Innovation Banking lead after Mark McQueen announces departure (BETAKIT)

Like McQueen, Usher joined CIBC with the acquisition of Wellington Financial in 2018. He has served as a key member of the leadership team and has been pivotal in building the Innovation Banking business.

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Meet Bard, Google’s Answer to ChatGPT (WIRED)

Sundar Pichai, Google’s CEO, wrote in a blog post that Bard is already available to “trusted testers” and designed to put the “breadth of the world’s knowledge” behind a conversational interface. It uses a smaller version of a powerful AI model called LaMDA, which Google first announced in May 2021 and is based on similar technology to ChatGPT.

Report maps Indigenous representation in BC tech, calls for need to address systemic barriers (BETAKIT)

The report examines labour market opportunities and constraints, skills development gaps, and perceptions about Indigenous employment and training across all sectors of BC’s economy – both from an Indigenous and industry perspective.

AI expert Fei-Fei Li joins Radical Ventures as partner (AXIOS)

"There’s no better time to do AI than today," said Fei-Fei Li, the artificial intelligence expert and Stanford University professor, who has worked in the field for more than two decades.

Ada latest Canadian unicorn to make additional staff cuts (BETAKIT)

Ada did not respond to questions about the number of employees that have been let go from the company, stating only that it reduced “a portion” of its workforce. Ada’s CTO Jessica Popp posted to LinkedIn that she was let go as part of this round of cuts.

Shopify dabbles in artificial intelligence with new product-description tool (THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

The new tool, dubbed “Shopify Magic,” will be part of the company’s e-commerce platform. It uses underlying technology similar to what powers ChatGPT, a generative AI application that has become popular since its launch late last year.

Microsoft thinks AI can beat Google at search — CEO Satya Nadella explains why (THE VERGE)

Microsoft announced that the next version of the Bing search engine would be powered by OpenAI, the company that makes ChatGPT. There’s also a new version of the Edge web browser with OpenAI chat tech in a window that can help you browse and understand web pages.

Vector Institute, Communitech partner to expand AI training program across Canada (BETAKIT)

The partnership between the two organizations hopes to bolster AI expertise and application across the country as Canada grapples with a limited tech talent pool.

Meta, Long an AI Leader, Tries Not to Be Left Out of the Boom (THE NEW YORK TIMES)

For nearly a decade, Meta has spent billions of dollars building new kinds of A.I. Mark Zuckerberg, the chief executive, made it a mission for Meta to become a leader in the field back in 2013. The company hired hundreds of top A.I. researchers, including Dr. LeCun. It spent hundreds of millions of dollars on the large amounts of computing power needed to build A.I. systems.

Yet Meta has been left out now that Silicon Valley is gripped with excitement by “generative A.I.,” the name for technologies that generate text, images and other media on their own. OpenAI has taken center stage, even though Meta and many other companies have built similar technologies.

Chinese tech giant Alibaba working on a ChatGPT rival; shares jump (CNBC)

A company spokesperson said the company is working on a ChatGPT-style of technology and it is currently being tested internally at the firm.

Alibaba shares jumped 3% in pre-market trade in the U.S.

Hippoc announces $3 million to help marketers test ad campaigns using neuroscience (BETAKIT)

The use of neuroscience in marketing communication is referred to as ‘neuromarketing.’ It collects cognitive data from consumers based on how they perceive advertisements. This tech segment has been around for a couple of decades, and is based on existing marketing content or simulations under research studies.

ChatGPT is a blurry JPEG of the Web (THE NEW YORKER)

Visual artists’ work is being gathered online and used as fodder for computer imitations. When Toronto’s Sam Yang complained to an AI platform, he got an email he says was meant to taunt him.

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Michael Edgar

Michael Edgar

Michael is a multimedia journalist working out of the U.K. and a staff writer for BetaKit.

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