Google Targets Global Security with AI Cyber Defense Initiative

Google has unveiled a new policy, the AI Cyber Defense Initiative, designed to harness the power of artificial intelligence to improve global cybersecurity defenses. The proposed policy aims to counteract rapidly evolving threats by using AI to improve threat detection, automate vulnerability management and enhance incident response effectiveness. The Alphabet company introduced its new plan at the Munich Security Conference, where it also announced it has a pool of $2 million to award businesses and academic institutions for research initiatives involving large language models, code verification and other AI uses for cyber offense and defense. Continue reading Google Targets Global Security with AI Cyber Defense Initiative

Nvidia to Launch Unit Devoted to Building Custom HPC Chips

Nvidia is investing $30 billion in a new business unit focused on custom chips for high-performance computing. The company already controls about 80 percent of the advanced chip market but wants to avoid losing ground as alternatives spring up. Alphabet, AWS, Intel and AMD market high-end processors to third-parties, and Meta is expected to begin deploying its own Artemis AI chips this year. Nvidia has had discussions with Amazon, Google, Meta, Microsoft and OpenAI about helping them create bespoke chips and is also talking to automakers, cloud service providers (CSPs) and telecom companies, according to reports. Continue reading Nvidia to Launch Unit Devoted to Building Custom HPC Chips

Milestone: YouTube TV Surpasses 8 Million Global Subscribers

In his annual letter about the state of YouTube, CEO Neal Mohan shared that YouTube TV has passed 8 million subscribers in seven years. Mohan also revealed that YouTube viewers watch a daily average of 1 billion hours of the 19-year-old streaming video platform on a TV screen. With more than 3 million channels in the YouTube Partner Program, the platform has in the past three years paid over $70 billion to creators, artists and media companies. Now, as YouTube integrates AI, Mohan envisions developing “entirely new ways of empowering creative expression, managing rights, and driving revenue.” Continue reading Milestone: YouTube TV Surpasses 8 Million Global Subscribers

Growth in Ad Sales, AWS Drive Amazon Profit Up 200 Percent

Amazon’s net sales for Q4 were $170 billion, a 14 percent increase year-over-year. For the full year 2023, net sales were up by 12 percent to $574.8 billion. “This Q4 was a record-breaking holiday shopping season and closed out a robust 2023 for Amazon,” CEO Andy Jassy said in the recent earnings release. The results included October Prime Day and holiday season shopping. Outstanding Q4 performers included ad sales, up 27 percent to $14 billion, and Amazon Web Services, which brought in $24.2 billion, growing 13 percent.”What we’re most pleased with is the continued invention and customer experience improvements across our businesses,” Jassy added. Continue reading Growth in Ad Sales, AWS Drive Amazon Profit Up 200 Percent

Cisco and Nvidia Team to Offer Help Developing In-House AI

Nvidia and Cisco Systems want to simplify the process of creating in-house AI computing infrastructure with a new joint service offering end-to-end artificial intelligence solutions that aim to allow any enterprise firm to host its own AI data center. Along with its own networking gear, Cisco will globally broker Nvidia AI software and GPU cloud products along with jointly configured “purpose-built Ethernet networking-based solutions.” European cloud services provider ClusterPower is an early customer, using the new offering “to help drive data center operations with innovative AI/ML solutions.” Continue reading Cisco and Nvidia Team to Offer Help Developing In-House AI

CES: Google and Samsung Simplify File Sharing with Android

Google and Samsung have joined forces to make file sharing between Android devices easier and quicker. The companies have unified Google’s Nearby Share and Samsung’s Quick Share, “bringing the best of our sharing solutions together into a singular cross-Android solution under the Quick Share name,” and introducing the new utility across the entire Android ecosystem. “We’ve integrated the experiences and created the best default, built-in option for peer-to-peer content sharing across all types of devices in the Android and Chromebook ecosystems,” Google said at CES 2024 in Las Vegas. Continue reading CES: Google and Samsung Simplify File Sharing with Android

Google Touts 25 Years and 2023’s Top Global, Local Trends

Alphabet is celebrating 25 years in search with a 25-Year Video Time Capsule on YouTube in conjunction with Google’s annual Year in Search global and local trend charts for 2023. Delving into local interests and traversing the globe, the lists demonstrate how human curiosity connects us across the planet through universal common interests. Topping the global searches for 2023 news is the Israel-Hamas war, followed by June’s Titanic-bound submersible disaster, then the earthquakes that devastated Turkey and Syria in June. In the entertainment world, “Barbie” was Hollywood’s most-searched film. Continue reading Google Touts 25 Years and 2023’s Top Global, Local Trends

Court Rules in Favor of Epic Games in Google Antitrust Case

Epic Games has prevailed against Google in U.S. District Court, scoring a victory in the 2020 lawsuit filed against the search giant over antitrust behavior related to its Google Play store. Epic claims that Google leverages control over the Android mobile operating system to require content creators who want a presence on an estimated 71 percent of the world’s smartphones to sell through the Play Store. The verdict “proves Google’s app store practices are illegal and they abuse their monopoly to extract exorbitant fees, stifle competition and reduce innovation,” Epic wrote of the win. Google disagrees with the ruling and says it plans to appeal. Continue reading Court Rules in Favor of Epic Games in Google Antitrust Case

Google’s NotebookLM is a Personalized Lite Language Model

Google personalized AI assistant NotebookLM is an experimental product that has been in early access since July. Now the company is integrating its new Gemini Pro LLM with NotebookLM and making it available to U.S. residents 18 and older. NotebookLM is engineered “to help you do your best thinking,” Google says, with documents uploaded to the service making it “an instant expert in the information you need,” allowing it to answer questions about your data. Unlike generic chatbots, NotebookLM draws responses from the documents you feed it, meaning it will be hyper-focused — a lite version of a custom trained model. Continue reading Google’s NotebookLM is a Personalized Lite Language Model

Google Announces the Launch of Gemini, Its Largest AI Model

Google is closing the year by heralding 2024 as the “Gemini era,” with the introduction of its “most capable and general AI model yet,” Gemini 1.0. This new foundation model is optimized for three different use-case sizes: Ultra, Pro and Nano. As a result, Google is releasing a new, Gemini-powered version of its Bard chatbot, available to English speakers in the U.S. and 170 global regions. Google touts Gemini as built from the ground up for multimodality, reasoning across text, images, video, audio and code. However, Bard will not as yet incorporate Gemini’s ability to analyze sound and images. Continue reading Google Announces the Launch of Gemini, Its Largest AI Model

SageMaker HyperPod: Amazon Accelerates AI Model Training

Amazon has launched five new capabilities to its SageMaker service, including Sagemaker HyperPod, which accelerates large language and foundation model training and tuning. Sagemaker HyperPod is said to shorten the training time by up to 40 percent using its purpose-built infrastructure designed for distributed training at scale. By optimizing acceleration, SageMaker Inference reduces foundation model deployment costs by 50 percent and latency by 20 percent on average, Amazon claims. “SageMaker HyperPod removes the undifferentiated heavy lifting involved in building and optimizing machine learning infrastructure,” said Amazon. Continue reading SageMaker HyperPod: Amazon Accelerates AI Model Training

Google Seeks Out Scammers Using Bard to Spread Malware

Google has filed suit in federal district court in California to stop alleged fraudsters from leveraging public interest in artificial intelligence generally and Bard in particular to spread malware. The perpetrators, who are believed to be based in Vietnam, are said to be using Facebook to promote an “unpublished” version of Bard that when downloaded installs password-stealing malware into the host system. The suit claims the scammers are using Google’s trademark-protected intellectual property — including its name and that of Bard, its brand look and colors, and photographs of CEO Sundar Pichai to promote an illegal scheme. Continue reading Google Seeks Out Scammers Using Bard to Spread Malware

Music Industry Considers Impact of AI as New Tools Emerge

Alphabet is developing an AI tool that would let creators generate music in the voice of famous recording artists. Lyor Cohen, global head of music for Google and its YouTube subsidiary, has reportedly been in discussions with music labels for several months about obtaining the rights to use songs by major artists to train an AI model in this manner. The discussions continue, but not without raising concerns in the music business. Meanwhile, other AI tools are already generating new content, but not without facing some resistance. The use of artificial intelligence to generate creative works in the style of others is being hashed out in the courts. Continue reading Music Industry Considers Impact of AI as New Tools Emerge

DeepMind and Academics Advance General Purpose Robots

“Robots are great specialists, but poor generalists,” according to Google DeepMind, which says models are typically trained for individual tasks, and changing a single variable can mean starting again from scratch. Now the London-based Alphabet subsidiary thinks it’s come up with a way to combine knowledge across robotics for a general purpose machine helper. In conjunction with 33 academic labs, Google DeepMind has pooled data from 22 different robot types to create the Open X-Embodiment dataset. Simultaneously, the group releases the RT-1-X robotics transformer (RT) model derived from RT-1. Continue reading DeepMind and Academics Advance General Purpose Robots

Google Introduces an AI Watermark That Cannot Be Removed

Google DeepMind and Google Cloud have teamed to launch what they claim is an indelible AI watermark tool, which if it works would mark an industry first. Called SynthID, the technique for identifying AI-generated images is being launched in beta. The technology embeds its digital watermark “directly into the pixels of an image, making it imperceptible to the human eye, but detectable for identification,” according to DeepMind. SynthID is being released to a limited number of Google’s Vertex AI customers using Imagen, a Google AI language model that generates photorealistic images. Continue reading Google Introduces an AI Watermark That Cannot Be Removed