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Google faces a serious threat from ChatGPT


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This week, OpenAI’s new chatbot took the internet by storm, churning out poems, scripts, and essay responses that gasped Technoratti screenshots all over Twitter. The underlying technology has been around for a few years, but this is the first time OpenAI has brought to the masses a powerful language generation system known as his GPT3, and the most original of commands to give. caused human competition. (My favorite is writing a bible verse explaining how to remove a peanut butter sandwich from a VCR.) Besides the gimmicky demo, I use ChatGPT to draft code and find errors. Some have already found practical uses for ChatGPT, such as programmers. But the system’s greatest utility could be a financial disaster for Google by providing excellent answers to the queries currently being put to the world’s most powerful search engine.

Google works by crawling billions of web pages, indexing their content, and ranking the most relevant answers. It then spits out a list of links to click. ChatGPT offers something more intriguing for busy internet users. It is a single answer based on our own search and amalgamation of that information. As published on the internet by late 2021. (1)

I went through my Google search history over the past month and put 18 Google queries into ChatGPT and cataloged the answers. Then I ran another query on Google to refresh my memory. The end result, in my judgment, was that ChapGPT’s answer was more useful than Google’s answer in 13 out of 18 examples.

Usefulness is of course subjective. What do you mean by terms? A clear and comprehensive answer in this case. ChatGPT has a detailed (though slightly verbose) answer to the question of whether condensed or evaporated milk is better for Thanksgiving pumpkin pie, and how condensed milk leads to a sweeter pie. was explained. (Naturally, it was excellent.) Google mostly provided a list of links to recipes to click on, but no definitive answer.

This highlights that ChatGPT poses the greatest threat to Google going forward. This gives you a single immediate response without the need for further scanning of other websites. In Silicon Valley terms, this is a frictionless experience, the holy grail when online consumers overwhelmingly prefer fast, easy-to-use service.

Google has its own version of condensed answers to some queries, but they’re compilations of the highest-ranking web pages and are usually brief. It also has its own proprietary language model called LaMDA. It’s so good that one of his engineers at the company thought the system had sentience.

So why doesn’t Google generate its own single answer to a query, like ChatGPT? because it undermines their transactional business model. About 81% of Alphabet’s $257.6 billion in revenue in 2021 will come from advertising, much of it from Google’s pay-per-click ads, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Sridhar Ramaswamy, who oversaw Google’s advertising and commerce business from 2013 to 2018, said, “Everything is designed to get you to click on links. The big way.

It’s just a better experience, he added. Ramaswamy co-founded a subscription-based search engine called Neeva in 2019. In the coming months, Neeva plans to roll out a unique generative search feature that can summarize web pages with footnotes.

ChatGPT does not reveal the source of its information. In fact, it’s quite possible that its own creators will never know how to generate the answers they come up with. Sometimes the answer is clearly wrong.

Stack Overflow, a question and answer site for coders, temporarily banned users from sharing advice from ChatGPT on Monday, citing the thousands of answers programmers posted from the system were often wrong.

My own experience confirms this. I entered my 12-year-old daughter’s English essay questions into the system and it reliably provided long and eloquent analysis. However, the answer was full of mistakes. For example, it was written that the parents of a certain literary person passed away even though they had not.

The annoying thing about this flaw is that it’s hard to spot inaccuracies, especially when ChatGPT sounds very confident. And, as OpenAI itself admits, they often sound plausible. OpenAI initially trained the system to be more cautious, which resulted in it rejecting questions it knew the answer to. Conversely, the result will be like a college student bluffing an essay after not studying. Fluent Hogwash.

It’s unclear how common ChatGPT’s mistakes are. One estimate of him making the rounds on Twitter is a rate of 2% to 5%. Maybe more. This makes Internet users cautious about using her ChatGPT for important information. Another strength of Google is that it makes money primarily on transactional search queries for products and navigational searches to other sites, such as inputs on Facebook and YouTube. Queries of this sort accounted for many of his top 100 Google searches for 2022. As long as ChatGPT does not provide links to other sites, it does not intrude deeply into Google’s territory. But both of these issues can evolve over time. ChatGPT could become more accurate as OpenAI extends its model training to modern parts of the web. To that end, OpenAI is working on his system, called WebGPT, which he hopes will lead to more accurate answers to search queries, including citing sources. The combination of ChatGPT and WebGPT can be a powerful alternative to Google. Also, ChatGPT already gives him more accurate answers than OpenAI’s previous system.

ChatGPT got 1 million users in about 5 days. This is an extraordinary milestone. Instagram took him 2.5 months to reach this number and Facebook took him 10 months. While OpenAI has not publicly speculated about future applications, it could pose a real danger to Google if the new chatbots start sharing links to other websites, especially ones that sell things. I have.

Bloomberg Opinion Details:

Creative AI is creating nasty problems: Parmy Olson

ChatGPT could mess up democracy even more: Tyler Cowen

AI panned my script. Can It Crack Hollywood?: Chun Hwang

(1) ChatGPT was fine-tuned from models in the OpenAIs GPT-3.5 series of large-scale language models trained on a blend of text and code prior to Q4 2021.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.

Parmy Olson is a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion covering technology. Wall He Street He is a former reporter for The Journal and Forbes and author of We Are Anonymous.

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