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Meta, Long an A.I. Leader, Tries Not to Be Left Out of the Boom

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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.

Cretdit: Michael Furler

Two weeks before a chatbot called ChatGPT appeared on the internet in November and wowed the world, Meta, the owner of Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram, unveiled a chatbot of its own.

Called Galactica, it was designed for scientific research. It could instantly write its own articles, solve math problems, generate computer code and annotate images.

Like ChatGPT, Galactica also played fast and loose with facts, making up mathematical proofs, misstating historical dates and spinning tall tales. One user coaxed the chatbot into talking about the history of bears in space. When asked who runs Silicon Valley, Galactica replied, "Steve Jobs."

But unlike OpenAI, the tiny San Francisco lab that made ChatGPT, Meta encountered an avalanche of complaints about Galactica's mishaps. After just three days, the company, which has faced scrutiny for spreading misinformation and hate speech through its social networking apps, removed Galactica from the internet.

From The New York Times
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