Over the past few years, Generative AI (artificial intelligence) has become the hot cake in the global tech industry, with companies such as Google and Microsoft investing billions of dollars to develop new products associated with it. Alphabet Inc-owned Google on Friday said that the company will be combining its two teams DeepMind and Brain into a single focused unit called Google DeepMind in a bid to expand its AI research capabilities. The move is touted to help the tech giant compete with rivals such as Microsoft-backed OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

"The pace of progress is now faster than ever before. To ensure the bold and responsible development of general AI, we’re creating a unit that will help us build more capable systems more safely and responsibly," says Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google and Alphabet.

"This group, called Google DeepMind, will bring together two leading research groups in the AI field: the Brain team from Google Research, and DeepMind. Their collective accomplishments in AI over the last decade span AlphaGo, Transformers, word2vec, WaveNet, AlphaFold, sequence-to-sequence models, distillation, deep reinforcement learning, and distributed systems and software frameworks like TensorFlow and JAX for expressing, training and deploying large-scale ML (machine learning) models. Combining all this talent into one focused team, backed by the computational resources of Google, will significantly accelerate our progress in AI," he adds.

Demis Hassabis is appointed as the CEO of Google DeepMind and will lead the development of the company’s research of general AI systems. Jeff Dean will be serving as chief scientist to Google Research and Google DeepMind.

"By creating Google DeepMind, I believe we can get to that future faster. Building ever more capable and general AI, safely and responsibly, demands that we solve some of the hardest scientific and engineering challenges of our time. For that, we need to work with greater speed, stronger collaboration and execution, and to simplify the way we make decisions to focus on achieving the biggest impact,” Hassabis says.

According to the company, Google Research will continue its important work leading fundamental advances in computer science across areas such as algorithms and theory, privacy and security, quantum computing, health, climate and sustainability and responsible AI.

Last month, the search engine behemoth said that it will be introducing AI-powered writing features in Google Workspaces, particularly in Docs and Gmail, to trusted testers on a rolling basis throughout the year, before making them available for everyone. The company rolled out the new features in the English language in the US in March. 

In February this year, the search engine behemoth rolled out a chatbot named 'Bard', a new experimental conversational GoogleAI service, which is powered by LaMDA. LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications) is a powerful AI model that Google first released in May 2021. It works on similar technology as ChatGPT. The tech behemoth has also recently invested about $300 million in artificial intelligence start-up Anthropic, which is a rival of OpenAI. As part of the deal, Google will buy a 10% stake in Anthropic, which is testing a potential rival to OpenAI's ChatGPT as both startups work on generative AI models. 

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